HARTFORD – State Representative Arthur J. O’Neill (R-69) today praised the passage of a significant package of reforms aimed at spurring Connecticut’s lagging employment figures, which have held steady for two years at roughly 9%, and the sluggish state economy. The bi-partisan measures were adopted today by overwhelming votes of both the state House and Senate during a special session of the General Assembly.
A highlight of this bill is a provision effectively cuts the business entity tax in half, reducing it from $500 every two years to $250 every two years. I have for years advocated abolishing this annoying tax that hits businesses simply for existing in the State of Connecticut whether they make a profit of not.
“The excessive regulatory environment in Connecticut puts us at a significant disadvantage in retaining businesses and attracting new ones compared to other states. The result of this is that we aren’t growing any jobs. This package we passed today begins to address streamlining a cumbersome permitting process and eliminating some of those serious regulatory blockades to job growth, said Rep. O’Neill.
The package of bi-partisan reforms negotiated between the Governor’s office and legislative Democrats and Republicans includes:
Small Business Express Package – $600 million a year for four programs:
o Employee Training Program – subsidy for training employees targeted at unemployed low-income parents in high unemployment areas.
o Revolving Loan Fund – for small businesses on the verge of closing.
o Job Creation Incentive Program – for small stable businesses looking to expand employment.
o Job Creation Matching Grant – for small stable businesses looking to expansion.
Streamlining the Permitting Process – Hiring consultants to perform a LEAN analysis at DAS, DECD, DOT and DEEP to develop systemic changes at these agencies to permitting process, and enforcement for businesses; allow for pre-permitting in some instances. Also:
• Job Creation Tax Credits which consolidates and increases existing credits to $500 per month for each new job created by a small business; $900 per month for hiring unemployed, disabled or veterans.
• Manufacturing Reinvestment Account increases eligibility from 50 to 100 companies, and increases tax-exempt reinvestment.
Job Training – $20 million per year to establish or expand manufacturing technology programs at three community colleges and three vo-tech schools.
The measure also includes provisions that create a PILOT program for Airport Development Zones, authorizations for $340 million in Manufacturing Assistance Act (MAA) over the next two years, and authorization of a second First Five program.