A major part of my job creation agenda is the Small Business Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights consists of 10 policies that would immediately give companies and small businesses the certainty and economic environment they need to start hiring again. I am pleased to announce that one of these policies, which would create a patent fast lane for small businesses, has been adopted as an amendment to the America Invents Act. I will continue working to pass the remaining items included in the bill of rights to help put Illinois and America back to work.
In addition to the Small Business Bill of Rights, I have developed a 23 item economic policy checklist that would once again make the United States the best place on earth to start or expand a business.
Economic Policy Checklist
- Unburden The Economy From Washington Regulations. Small business employers face new cumbersome rules and regulations that discourage them from adding new employees. The President and Congress should support an economic moratorium on new regulations, which currently cost more than $1 billion.
- Codify the President's Proposal to Require Cost Benefit Analysis in the Formulation of Regulations. Ensure that regulations put forth by the Administration consider the economic burden on American businesses, ensure stakeholder input and promote innovation. These metrics should be applied to costly new mandates and burdens associated with Dodd-Frank and the Health Care law.
- New American Energy.Support expansion ofnew oil, coal, natural gas, biomass, hydro, solar, wind, and nuclear American power solutions with advanced technologies and strong research capabilities for more jobs. This is a time to support American energy developers expanding our independence from foreign oil, not singling them out with tax hikes.
- Lift the Outer Continental Shelf Prohibitions. Increase access to U.S. oil and natural gas reserves on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). This will create jobs, drive investment, and reduce our nation's dependence on foreign sources of oil. A February 2006 report released by the Department of the Interior estimated OCS reserves estimated 8.5 billion barrels of oil and 29 trillion cubic feet of natural gas are available. Increase Federal Loan Guarantee Authority for Nuclear Power.
- Stop Card-Check. "Card-Check" would threaten basic rights and the viability of employers and the small business community. The approach embraced by this proposal would deny employees the ability to privately cast their vote for or against union representation and eliminate the personal and flexible negotiations between small business owners and employees on contracts and working arrangements. The result is a higher cost of doing business, and creating a one-size-fits-all approach to wages and benefits.
- Increase Exports To Create More Jobs. In order to bring back jobs as our economy recovers, America's workers, farmers and service providers need access to consumers and markets around the world. American exporters do not enjoy the same opportunity for entry into new markets as their global competitors. Export agreements would reduce barriers to entry, level the playing field for our entrepreneurs and increase job growth at home.
- Ratify Three Pending Export-Opening Agreements. We should ratify the pending agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama before July recess. This proposal is estimated to create 250,000 jobs.
- Provide Trade Promotion Authority for the President. This proposal will get the U.S. back in the business of engaging in market opening agreements.
- Require a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution. Limit the ability to raise taxes to pay for runaway spending.
- Require a Statutory Spending Limit. A statutory process that provides a budget strait-jacket so that Congress is forced to make difficult decisions each year to live within its means, as every American family must, and turns toward a path of fiscal balance.
- Cut Spending to Immediately and Substantially Reduce Deficits. Cut spending relative to current levels to make a down payment on future spending restraint. This effort should also involve reforms to control entitlement spending and strengthen these programs for future generations.
- Reform Tax Code To Spur Economic Growth. End tax expenditures (preserving the mortgage interest and charity deductions) in return for dropping the top rates from 39% to 29% as recommended by the President's bipartisan deficit commission.
- Simplify and Reduce Business and Individual Tax Rates. Reduce the corporate tax rate to 25%, creating 5.3 million private-sector jobs over 10 years.
- Make Research and Development Tax Credit Permanent. Support innovation in the United States by providing the assurance and certainty that the temporary nature of the credit currently does not provide.
- Extend and Make Permanent the Small Business Investment Tax Incentive. Small businesses should be able to immediately write off equipment purchases as tax deductions.
- Reduce Taxes on Capital Gains and Dividends. Eliminate the uncertainty hanging over investors by making lower taxes on capital gains and dividends permanent. Low rates should be pursued because capital taxation harms economic growth and productivity, and ultimately lowers wages for workers.
- Support passage of S.299 REINS Act. The Act would require congressional approval by joint resolution of any federal rule that may result in an effect on the economy of at least $100 million.
- Require Greater Access to Federal Lands for Exploration of Resources. The U.S. has a natural abundance of energy resources including coal, natural gas, solar, wind, oil, biomass, and water resources. Expansion of access to federal lands for the development of these resources would take advantage of these resources while diminishing our reliance on foreign fuel sources of fuel.
- Adopt Common Sense Health Care Solutions. Meaningful health reform must begin with repealing and replacing the health care law, which will forestall the loss of 800,000 workers from the labor force. Pursue reforms that increase competition and reduce the skyrocketing cost of care.
- Enact Meaningful Medical Malpractice Reform. Such common-sense reform would lessen the wasteful practice of defensive medicine, save the federal government billions of dollars and reduce health care costs passed on to employers.
- Allow for Purchases of Insurance Across State Lines. This proposal would induce competition among health insurance companies, driving down costs and improving access.
- Provide Additional Risk Pools for Small Business. This proposal would allow small businesses to benefit from the economies of scale enjoyed by larger corporations and insurance plans in the health insurance group-market.
- Strengthen Health Savings Accounts and Patient-Centric Health Care. HSAs are savings accounts for medical expenses that offer flexibility for employees and reduce costs for employers. Improving HSAs will bring down costs for job creators and encourage personal responsibility. Reforms should also build on successful state-level initiatives to strengthen the transparency and value of health care services.