Official Press Statement:
Representatives Susi Hamilton, Ed Hanes, Rodney Moore, Ken Waddell and Michael Wray
INACTION – NO SESSION WILL COST NORTH CAROLINA 12,000 JOBS
Despite the length of this ‘short’ session, the General Assembly has thus far failed to adequately address one of the most important issues facing North Carolina – job protection and creation. Good jobs are the foundation of our families and our communities. The North Carolina General Assembly has failed to enact any serious programs that will assist capital expansion, create an environment conducive to hiring, and actually secure the jobs of new and existing workers.
The good news is that this year’s legislative session has not yet adjourned. There is still time to support a bi-partisan economic development plan that will move this state forward. We are convinced that a bi-partisan approach is the only chance of preventing the crippling of economic development opportunities for North Carolina in the next nine months. Without the basic tools of economic development, the North Carolina Department of Commerce cannot be competitive in job recruitment. Every one of our county economic development offices, the new Public Private Partnership (PPP), and the new prosperity zones will all be unable to effectively “sell” our state if a comprehensive plan does not pass.
Many of the elements of S 763 are supported broadly by members of our caucus. However, it is clear that in some areas the plans offered by the Governor are not aggressive enough.
We offer the following items that would make it worthy of vigorous bi-partisan support:
- Historic Rehabilitation Investment Program – This inexpensive program is one of the few tools to encourage rehabilitation of commercial buildings in small towns and cities across the state. While the credit has been used extensively in Durham, Charlotte, Fayetteville, Raleigh and other larger cities, it has been particularly helpful in our smaller communities to create the type of re-investment we need to keep these communities vibrant.
- New Market Tax Credits – This program is creating major investment by private capital in 14 others states. It fills a giant gap that exists where Banks are now reluctant to lend in rural and distressed areas. Where this law has passed, the state has seen an immediate influx of capital and lending, often near the half billion mark in the first year. This program does not cost the taxpayer money; it generates jobs and taxes for the state. It must be part of any bi-partisan comprehensive economic development plan.
- Film Tax Credit – This program has long been supported by both Republicans and Democrats alike. It makes money for state and local government by supporting 4,200 highly paid permanent jobs and 15,000 part time jobs, which in turn pays gasoline, payroll, property, sales and all other taxes and fees that support the government. These workers have no job option in their field and will be forced leave the state if North Carolina turns its back on this knowledge-based industry.
Without S 763 and parts of H 1224:
- Two proposed manufacturing plants and their 1,400 jobs that the Commerce Department is seeking will not come
- The EPA will close the plant in Canton laying off 1,200 workers in Senator Apodoca’s and Senator Davis’ district
- The state will eliminate 4,200 jobs in the film industry
- The ELIMINATION OF OUR MAJOR RECRUITMENT TOOL, JDIG, EFFECTIVELY TAKING NORTH CAROLINA OUT OF THE JOB RECRUITMENT BUSINESS FOR ONE YEAR. If past performance is a guide, this will cost 6,000 jobs just in the recruits the Secretary is engaged with now
There are other tax provisions of H 1224 that could possibly be added to this compromise, some of which we are aware are much needed by the Department of Commerce and the Department of Revenue. These include, but are not limited to, Crowd Funding, JMAC, JDIG, solar energy tax credits and the Secretary’s new Catalyst Fund.
We are calling on Governor McCrory and Senator Berger to sit down with House leadership and our caucus so we can finalize a package that can pass both houses with a strong bi-partisan vote.