December 16, 2010
Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose) issued the following statement on H.R. 4853 – Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010.
Madam Speaker, I rise today to express my concerns regarding the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010.
The American economy is slowly recovering from the worst recession we’ve seen since the Great Depression. While there has been some improvement, the economy is still fragile, and we need to ensure that our tax policy for the near future supports job growth if we are to continue on this path of recovery.
Unfortunately, the tax package that the Senate has sent us today does not support the creation of new jobs.
The United States is quickly being surpassed by other countries in infrastructure and clean energy investments. Rather than supporting tax policies to reverse this trend, the Senate’s tax package focuses on tax cuts for the wealthiest in our population and old energy sources that do not present great possibilities for our future.
While the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) made important strides in closing that gap, this legislation is a step backwards. The Senate’s tax package includes a one year extension of the Treasury Grant Program enacted in section 1603 of ARRA that allows renewable energy companies to receive a cash grant in lieu of either the production or investment tax credit. The Program was designed to allow renewable energy projects to continue while investor demands for tax credits lagged in a sluggish economy. Unfortunately, a one year extension is insufficient to ensure a steady stream of investment in renewable energy projects and may stall the momentum we’ve built in creating a strong, green economy.
Further, the tax package fails to include the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit from ARRA, a program that was immensely useful. The tax credit was created to expand domestic clean energy manufacturing. America needs to rebuild its manufacturing base to compete in the global marketplace. The Manufacturing Tax Credit is crucial to laying a foundation for the United States to be a leader in the clean energy manufacturing industry.
The failure to extend these critical programs will have negative economic impact across the country and in my district in San Jose. As a Member from Silicon Valley, I represent many renewable energy and energy efficiency companies that are currently utilizing these credits to create jobs and stimulate the economy. By not including robust renewable energy programs as part of our tax policy, we are failing to invest in our economic future, and for that reason, Madam Speaker, I am unable to vote for the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010.