STOCK OPTION ACCOUNTING REFORM ACT -- (House of Representatives - July 20, 2004)
The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 725 and rule XVIII, the Chair declares the House in the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union for the consideration of the bill, H.R. 3574.
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Mr. SMITH of Texas. Mr. Chairman, I support H.R. 3574, the Stock Option Accounting Reform Act, which preserves broad-based stock options. It is vital that we preserve these incentives to promote stock ownership for millions of workers as we try to fulfill President Bush's goal of creating an "ownership society."
In my home state of Texas, numerous high-tech companies offer stock options to attract the best and the brightest employees. Options have become a vital tool used to attract educated and highly-skilled employees to companies both in Texas and elsewhere.
Broad-based employee stock option plans give employees at all levels a chance to own a "piece of the rock." This in turn fuels innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit and increases productivity, because employees feel as though they have a vested interest in the success of the company.
However, the Financial Accounting Standards Board wants to change the rules in a way that would make it more difficult for companies to continue offering stock options to their rank-and-file employees.
Passage of H.R. 3574 is essential in our efforts to create more jobs and growth in the high tech sector of our economy. It would be a huge mistake to discourage companies from offering stock options. Many of our international competitors are increasing the use of stock options to gain competitive advantage. So they are a vital tool to recruit and retain high tech workers in America.