Legislation of Interest
Start-up Act 2.0
Startup Act 2.0 makes changes to the tax code to encourage investment in startup companies. The bill also creates new opportunities for American-educated and entrepreneurial immigrants to remain in the United States where their talent and ideas can fuel economic growth and create American jobs. Finally, Startup Act 2.0 alleviates regulatory burdens that make it more difficult for businesses to expand and create jobs.
Startup Act 2.0 includes the following provisions:
- Creates a new STEM visa so that U.S.-educated foreign students, who graduate with a master’s or Ph.D. in science, technology, engineering or mathematics, can receive a green card and stay in this country where their talent and ideas can fuel growth and create American jobs;
- Creates an Entrepreneur’s Visa for legal immigrants, so they can remain in the United States, launch businesses and create jobs;
- Eliminates the per-country caps for employment-based immigrant visas – which hinder U.S. employers from recruiting the top-tier talent they need to grow;
- Makes permanent the exemption of capital gains taxes on the sale of startup stock held for at least five years – so investors can provide financial stability at a critical juncture of firm growth;
- Creates a targeted research and development tax credit for young startups less than five years old and with less than $5 million in annual receipts. This R&D credit is designed to allow startups to offset employee taxes – freeing up resources to help these young companies expand and create jobs;
- Uses existing federal R&D funding to support university initiatives designed to bring cutting-edge research to the marketplace more quickly where it can propel economic growth;
- Requires all government agencies to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of all proposed “major rules” with an economic impact of $100 million or more. This new requirement will help determine the efficacy of regulations and their potential impact on the formation and growth of new businesses; and
- Directs the U.S. Department of Commerce to assess state and local policies that aid in the development of new businesses. Through the publication of reports on new business formation and the entrepreneurial environment, lawmakers will be better equipped to encourage entrepreneurship with the most successful policies
Senate sponsors were U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Scott Brown (R-Mass.) and Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
The House version, H.R. 5893, was introduced by Reps. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.), Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.), Jared Polis (D-Colo.), Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), Russ Carnahan (D-Mo.) and Robert Dold (R-Ill.).
The U.S. Senate passed its version of the Farm Billby a margin of 64 to 35. The Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act of 2012 was expedited after Senate leadership reached a unanimous consent agreement on the number of amendments to be considered. Research, Extension, and Related Matters (Title VII) fared very well, with just four amendments adopted:
- Stabenow Amendment 2390 (substitute for the entire bill) — Makes the District of Columbia eligible to participate in the McIntire-Stennis Cooperative Forestry program. Substitute amendment agreed to by unanimous consent (no separate vote on the DC / McIntire-Stennis provision).
- Carper Amendment 2287 (High-Priority Research and Extension Initiatives) — Adds new, specific authority for corn, soybean meal, cereal grains, and grain byproducts research and extension for the purpose of carrying out or enhancing research to improve the digestibility, nutritional value, and efficiency of use of corn, soybean meal, cereal grains, and grain byproducts for the poultry and food animal production industries. Agreed to by voice vote.
- Boozman Amendment 2355 — Requires the Secretary of Agriculture, acting through the National Agricultural Library, to support the dissemination of objective, scholarly, and authoritative agricultural and food law research and information by entering into partnerships with institutions of higher education with the requisite expertise. Limits spending to $1,000,000 per year (of the amounts made available to the National Agricultural Library to carry out the section). Agreed to by voice vote.
- Moran Amendment 2443 (Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program — Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to use such sums as necessary to make competitive grants to establish and improve farm safety programs at the local level. Eligible entities include: an agency of a state or political subdivision of a state; a national, state, or regional organization of agricultural producers; and any other entity determined appropriate by the Secretary. Agreed to by unanimous consent.
Also, you can find out information about all bills and resolutions in both the Senate and the House of Representatives at the Library of Congress' THOMAS page.