August 01, 2013

Small Business Growth for N.M. Jobs & Families

One of my top priorities in the U.S. Senate is to do everything I can to help create jobs and opportunities for all New Mexicans. I wanted to update you on some of the work I've been doing to put us back on a path to creating more well-paying jobs.

Recently, I met with chamber of commerce leaders in New Mexico and in Washington to discuss how the federal government can partner with the private sector to grow our economy. Our chamber leaders provide valuable resources to job seekers, workers and businesses every day. I value their input, and I'm working closely with them to support their efforts.

Here's a video from when I hosted Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce & New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce leaders at the U.S. Capitol.

I'm also working to pass three bills that are the result of my conversations with New Mexico small business owners.

New Mexico's small businesses are the engine that drives our economy. We are home to more than 150,000 small businesses - they make up almost 96% of all our state's employers - and my legislation would help them create more jobs and provide for their families.

My bills address the challenges entrepreneurs face working with the federal government and growing their businesses. The goal is to help the federal government streamline contracting, ensure that more contracts are awarded to small businesses and reduce unnecessary red tape.

Below is a summary of the bills I am working on to help job creation in New Mexico. Click on each title for more information.

  • The Small Business Investment Promotion Act makes permanent a tax deduction of $250,000 for the purchase of machinery, software and property investments so businesses can buy the equipment they need to grow jobs and increase profits.
  • The Help Our Middle Class Entrepreneurs (HOME) Act reduces the paperwork burden on small business owners who work out of their homes by making permanent an optional standard deduction of $1,500, replacing the current complicated process for claiming the home office deduction.
  • The Expanding Opportunities for Main Street Act raises the cap to $500,000 on the value of small business contracts, gives small businesses preference in contracting and increases the government-wide small business contracting goals.

This last piece of legislation builds upon another bill I introduced - the Assuring Contracting Equity (ACE) Act of 2013, which gives small businesses a better shot at tapping into federal awards. It increases contracting goals for veteran-owned businesses and women-owned businesses, and holds procurement officers accountable when they don't award a contract to a qualified small business.

The ACE Act will help companies like bigbyte.cc, the only women-owned, privately held data center in New Mexico, that I visited earlier this year. Nerissa Whittington and her staff are not only working to grow their business, they are helping our community by serving as an incubator space for businesses in our state's high-tech workforce.

I am proud to be working on a bipartisan basis with Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) on two of these measures, and I look forward to gaining more support for all of them so we can pass them into law and keep building our economy.

Together, these bills will help New Mexico's business community - and our employees - get our state's economy back on track. I know that by working together we'll ensure that all of New Mexico's families have the opportunity to build a better future.

I'll keep you updated on the status of these proposals, but in the meantime, feel free to contact my office with your thoughts and opinions on these or any other issues.