March 17, 2010

Udall, Senate Send HIRE ACT to President

Jobs Bill will Strengthen Economy, Put America Back to Work

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall, D-NM, today voted to put America back to work by joining 67 other senators in giving final approval to the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act, a bipartisan bill that will boost the economy and potentially create and save more than a million jobs.

The HIRE Act passed with a bipartisan 68-29 vote. It now goes to President Obama for his signature.

"The HIRE Act will spur the creation of quality, stable jobs for hardworking New Mexicans," Udall said. "By investing in small businesses, critical infrastructure and American ingenuity, we continue to grow our economy and put New Mexico back to work."

The HIRE Act is the first legislation in a package of bills planned over the coming months to strengthen the economy and spur job growth in New Mexico and across the country, according to Udall.

Among other things, the HIRE Act would:

  • Create a new tax incentive for businesses to hire unemployed workers and spur immediate job growth. This provision would provide businesses with an exemption from Social Security payroll taxes they owe for every worker hired in 2010 who has been unemployed for at least 60 days.
  • Help small businesses grow and hire more workers by allowing them to write off more of their expenditures. This includes an extension of a provision in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which allows small businesses to deduct up to $250,000 of the cost of qualifying property in the year it is purchased, rather than waiting to recover their costs through depreciation reductions over a number of years.
  • Extend transportation programs to rebuild our nation's infrastructure and save jobs. This would extend current surface transportation programs through Dec. 31, 2010, and would transfer approximately $20 billion to the Highway Trust Fund to ensure certainty of funding moving forward.
  • Expand the Build America Bonds program to allow state and local governments to finance more infrastructure projects and put people to work. Build America Bonds was created through the Recovery Act and allows state and local government to borrow for infrastructure projects at lower costs. Approximately $65 billion in these bonds were issued in 2009.