Congressman Chandler Introduces the Economic Development Act of 2005
Legislation will reverse court ruling that may restrict Kentucky's ability to create jobs
WASHINGTON (May 18, 2005) Today at 10:00 AM, Congressman Ben Chandler along with Senator Voinovich (R-OH), Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Congressman Tiberi (R-OH) will introduce landmark legislation that will effectively reverse a recent ruling of a federal appeals court in Cincinnati that may prevent Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, and Tennessee from using state tax incentives to retain business and fuel the local economy. The legislation would affirm that sates have the authority to provide tax incentives for economic development purposes.
Congressman Chandler introduced the Jobs Investment Act in the 108th Congress after business leaders throughout the 6th Judicial Circuit protested the October 19, 2004 decision that prevented Ohio from using tax credits to encourage DaimlerChrysler Corporation to expand its business operations in Toledo, Ohio. The ruling, which found that certain state tax credits discriminate against interstate commerce, casts a cloud over job development in Kentucky and surrounding states and severely limits a state's ability to retain local business.
The Economic Development Act of 2005 is a refinement of the Jobs Investment Act that enjoys bipartisan support and stands an excellent chance of passage in both the House and Senate. Congressman Chandler has secured the support of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters as well as his fellow Blue Dog Democrat colleagues.
"State tax incentives are a powerful tool for economic investment and provide thousands of jobs for our citizens," said Congressman Chandler. "In time, the 6th Circuit Court ruling could cripple our economy and force businesses out of state. If we do not act now, this decision will jeopardize job creation in Kentucky and drive business prospects into surrounding states or even overseas. Tax incentives in Kentucky have a proven track record of success and have enjoyed bipartisan support in our General Assembly for nearly 15 years."
Over the past eight years, tax incentives in Kentucky have generated over $10.8 billion in capitol investment including over 200,000 jobs and $5.1 billion in employee earnings. Local companies such as Toyota, Webasto Roof Systems, Inc., and Ford have all taken advantage of these tax credits to expand their operations throughout the state.
"One of my goals as a Congressman is to help the 6th District of Kentucky establish a standard of living above the national average," said Chandler. "Although we have succeeded in attracting a number of respected companies to the area, we must continually strive to ensure that all Kentuckians enjoy the benefits of a well-paid job. This legislation will empower our local companies and enable Kentucky to become a strong competitor in the new economy."