Press Releases

 

Wednesday
Jun032009

VP Biden Hosts Roundtable with Business Leaders on Recovery Act 

New York – Vice President Joe Biden today hosted a roundtable with business leaders from across the country highlighting how the Recovery Act is not just creating and saving jobs, but also creating new business opportunities just 100 day into the two-year program.

 

“The Recovery Act is putting people to work – and our business leaders here today are a testament to that. They are on the front lines of hiring folks for new jobs and preventing lay-offs. They have first-hand knowledge of how this economy – and our policies – are working,” said Vice President Biden. “We’re looking to those in the business community to be creative, to be innovative and really take advantage of the new opportunities made possible by this Recovery Act.

 

Joining him at the event at Pace University’s Lubin School of Business were New York Governor David Paterson, Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Neal Wolin and business leaders ranging from small business owners to CEOs.

 

"Today we see federal economic recovery funds at work in New York State, creating jobs and helping families," Governor David A. Paterson said. “Already crews have broken ground on projects that will make lasting, critical infrastructure improvements across our State. I extend my sincere thanks to the President Obama, Vice President Biden and our entire New York Congressional Delegation for fighting to secure this funding for New York.”

“The Treasury Department is implementing Recovery Act provisions swiftly and efficiently, which is helping to stabilize the housing market, provide tax relief to working Americans, and give economic assistance to state and local governments.” said Deputy Secretary Neal Wolin. “The Recovery Act, together with our efforts to stabilize the financial system, is starting to make a difference. The national economy is showing some initial signs of stability with confidence improving and credit starting to ease. We still have a long way to go towards rebuilding our economy and ensuring that Americans are back at work, but all Americans should know that this Administration is absolutely committed to getting us there.”

Among the group of business leaders participating in today’s event was Christian Zimmerman, President of Pike Industries, Inc. Before Pike Industries won its first stimulus construction project this spring, Mr. Zimmerman was planning to lay off 100 employees, in addition to another 150 employees who he had been forced to cut since 2006 as a result of decreased construction in the economic downturn. But when Pike won a stimulus contract repaving Rt. 101 along New Hampshire’s seacoast this spring, not only was Mr. Zimmerman able to retain those 100 employees, he was able to hire 100 more.

 

“Enactment of the Recovery Act, followed by quick action by federal and state governments to get highway money out into the economy, came at a critical time for our industry. Our company not only avoided significant layoffs, but we have hired many new employees, engaged subcontractors, contracted for new equipment and we are purchasing various materials and services to support the stimulus projects we have been awarded. Clearly, the positive effects of the Recovery Act will be felt throughout our economy,” said Christian Zimmerman, President of Pike Industries, Inc.

 

In addition to the immediate direct benefits business owners like Mr. Zimmerman are seeing as a result of Recovery Act contracts, the law also includes a number of tax credits that are driving new product demand and indirectly benefiting companies across a variety of sectors. The Recovery Act includes over a dozen energy-efficiency and renewable energy tax credits that are creating new opportunities for companies like Standard Renewable Energy, a Houston-based company that helps homeowners, businesses and government entities reduce their energy consumption, and Crystal Window and Door Systems,Ltd.,a manufacturer of energy-efficient window products.

 

"The Recovery Act provides innovative ways for businesses and consumers to save money while also investing in energy efficiency," said John Berger, Founder and CEO of Standard Renewable Energy, in Houston, Texas. "Because of the Recovery Act, our business is growing, not shrinking. We just opened a new office in Phoenix, and by year's end, our workforce will have grown over 70 percent."

 

“Because of the Recovery Act’s emphasis on Energy-star rated products and our ability to promote our products as energy efficient, our business has improved,” said Steve Chen, Executive Vice President of Crystal Window & Door Systems, Ltd.Flushing, New York.“The Recovery Act is not just an injection of cash into the economy; it goes a long way in educating the public and changing perceptions about Energy-star and greener products – how homeowners can invest in their homes, the environment and the economy at the same time.”

 

The Recovery Act also includes an $8,000 tax credit for first-time homebuyer that has turned out to be a bright spot for the hard-hit housing industry.

 

“The $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit is stimulating nearly 200,000 additional home sales across the nation and will result in over 73,000 new jobs. Last week at NAHB’s spring board meeting, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced new rules that will enable buyers to access the credit at closing, which will make it even more effective. While this is a good start, we still have a long way to go before returning to a healthy housing market,” said Joe Robson,President of the Robson CompanyinBroken Arrow, Oklahomaand Chairman of the National Association of Home Builders.

 

One of the greatest challenges facing business owners during the economic downturn is access to capital. When the economy began to falter, Francis Jamiel, owner of Jamiel’s Shoe World in Providence, Rhode Island, sought a loan to help keep his 73-year old family business afloat, but found his options were limited as banks began tightening their lending practices. However, thanks to Recovery Act provisions that allow the government to provide a 90 percent guarantee for some Small Business Administration loans and eliminate related fees, Mr. Jamiel was able to secure a $400,000 loan that is providing working capital for inventory and operating expenses and helping keep his business open.

 

“After 73 years of selling shoes, my family’s business couldn’t get help from the banks to refinance. We were at the point of shutting the doors and going out of business,” said Francis Jamiel, owner of Jamiel’s Shoe World, the largest family-owned shoe retailer in Rhode Island and the first small business in the state to receive an SBA loan. “This SBA funding allowed me to pay down my debt – it literally saved my business.”

 

On a much larger scale, the billions of dollars allocated in the Recovery Act to develop and commercialize renewable energy sources like wind, solar, geothermal and biomass have spurred companies like Braemar Energy Ventures to makenew targeted venture capital investments in companies that are developing the technology that will serve as the foundation for our economic recovery.

 

"Many of the companies in which we invest can benefit enormously from support from our governmentprovided by the ARRA to scale up and provide jobs in both new and emerging energy areasas well as newly skilledjobs in theexisting energy sectors. The capital intensity of the global energy business is a major challenge for emerging companies with new technologies and thereforeloan guarantees and grants can help bridge the gap to building the large scale facilities and factories needed in the early days to deploy their products and hire askilled workforce,"said Neil S. Suslak, Founding Partner of Braemar Energy Ventures.

 

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law by President Obama on February 17, 2009 as the nation faced the greatest economic crisis in half a century. Just over 100 days in, over 150,000 jobs have been created or saved by the Recovery Act and over $126 billion has been obligated to stimulative programs and projects.

 

To learn more about the Recovery Act, please visit www.Recovery.gov.

 

Wednesday
Jun032009

SEIA - Economic Growth and Job Opportunities on Display at Largest Photovoltaic Solar Conferences

PV America and 34th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference open in wake of Obama announcement of increased funding for solar initiatives

 

Keynotes to include PA Gov. Rendell, DOE Officials, Wall Street Finance Experts, and SEIA President Rhone Resch

 

PHILADELPHIA, PA – The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) will host the PV America Conference and Trade Show, in partnership with IEEE’s 34th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC) and the Mid-Atlantic Solar Energy Industries Association (MSEIA), from Monday, June 8 to Wednesday, June 10 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.

 

Monday’s joint opening plenary session from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. will feature Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter, U.S. Department of Energy Solar Program Manager JoAnn Milliken, and SEIA President and CEO Rhone Resch. It will be followed by a news conference in Room 110 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

 

Tuesday’s plenary session from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. will feature industry visionary Jigar Shah of Jigar Shah Consulting, founder and former CEO of SunEdison and a Workforce Development Roundtable moderated by Jeff Wolfe, CEO of groSolar and Chair of SEIA’s Photovoltaics Division. Panelists for the roundtable include Kathleen Bolcar (U.S. Department of Energy Workforce Development Program), Dave Foster (Blue Green Alliance), Bracken Hendricks (Center for American Progress), and David Riley (Penn State Center for Sustainability). It will be followed by a news conference in Room 110 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

 

Wednesday’s plenary session from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. will feature former Director of Central Intelligence James Woolsey and a Solar Financing Roundtable moderated by Jesse Pichel of Piper Jaffray.Panelists include Nancy Pfund of DBL Investors, Ed Sproull of HSH-Nordbank AG, Sanjay Shrestha of Lazard Capital Markets, Nick Allen of Morgan Stanley, and Matt Cheney of Renewable Ventures (a Fotowatio Company). It will be followed by a news conference in Room 110 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

 

Nearly 3,000 attendees are expected to attend the joint conferences.PV America will offer more than 40 educational sessions focusing on expanding market opportunities, workforce development, and policy.Conference attendees will also have access to 125 exhibitors in the exposition hall.The exposition hall will be open to the public at no charge for Public Day on Tuesday, June 9 from 12:00 noon to 8:00 p.m.

 

PV America is SEIA’s first conference dedicated solely to the fastest growing sector of the solar industry – photovoltaic solar that experienced 81 percent growth rate in 2008 despite the faltering economy.This is also SEIA’s first conference on the East Coast.Philadelphia is located in the heart of what has emerged as one of the nation’s leading areas for photovoltaic installations – the Mid-Atlantic region.

 

Media are welcome at the plenary sessions, concurrent sessions, press conferences and exposition.For press credentials, contact presscredentials@seia.org.

 

About PV America and the 34th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference

Organizers of the PV America 2009 program include the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Mid-Atlantic chapter of SEIA (MSEIA). Programming from IEEE’s renowned Photovoltaic Specialists Conference is paired with SEIA’s policy and market development expertise to present the most current updates on PV technology, industry trends and business opportunities.Learn more at http://www.pvamericaexpo.com and http://www.34pvsc.org.

 

Follow PV America at http://twitter.com/PVAmerica, www.facebook.com (Group: PV America 2009 Conference), http://www.youtube.com/user/PVAmerica2009 andwww.linkedin.com

(Group: PV America 2009 Conference)

 

Tuesday
Jun022009

NHGOP STATEMENT ON LYNCH'S DISASTROUS REAL ESTATE TAX 

CONCORD – Today, former New Hampshire Governor and Republican State Committee Chairman John H. Sununu released the following statement on Governor Lynch’s disastrous real estate tax proposal:

 

“Governor Lynch’s plan to make homeowners and businesses who refinance their mortgages pay a huge real estate transfer tax is another example of how out of touch he is with what is happening in New Hampshire. Even President Obama has encouraged homeowners to take advantage of lower mortgage rates to refinance their payments and ease their burden during these very tough financial times.

 

“Governor Lynch however seems to feel that overburdened mortgage payers should help bailout his disastrous budget. This latest tax gambit by the Governor, when added to his other desperate tax increases, underscores the fact that when the state needs a real governor, there really is no governor to be found.

 

“ ‘Nice’ works when there are no problems, but today in difficult times New Hampshire could really use some leadership.”

 

 

BACKGROUND:

 

Governor Lynch Is Proposing A Disastrous Real Estate Tax Plan:

 

Union Leader: “If you're thinking of refinancing your mortgage, you might want to act fast. Gov. John Lynch is looking at a proposal that would tax refinancings the same way we now tax real-estate transfers.” (5/31/09)

 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT GOVERNOR LYNCH’S DISASTEROUS PROPOSAL

 

 

Tuesday
Jun022009

Bradley D3 NH Senator - Time to Talk Taxes 

The Senate Finance Committee last week reported its version of the state operating budget. It increases overall spending by about a billion dollars or approximately 10% after similar increases in the last budget enacted two years ago. This budget depends upon $185 million of direct revenue from slot machines as well as hefty tax hikes on businesses in the middle of a deep recession.

 

Slot machines at race tracks in Salem, Seabrook, and Belmont is a proposal that has been around a long time. The Finance Committee approved up to 13,000 slot machines and two north-country facilities that are estimated to produce $185 million in revenue. Gambling is not a partisan issue and has determined support because of the added revenue, and determined opposition because of social implications and the change in the fabric of our state it could create. I continue to have concerns about gambling.

 

While bettors may be laying long odds that gambling will ultimately pass, it is almost certain that taxes are going up. These looming and precipitous tax hikes are due to the majority party in control of both the House and Senate which has shown no willingness to cut spending as families and businesses are doing to survive the harsh economy.

 

Here are the major tax proposals being bandied about in Concord.

 

5% tax on Capital Gains: Passed by the House but rejected by the Senate Finance Committee. Among the worst of all proposals, taxing capital gains is directly harmful to business growth, investment, risk taking, and productivity. It taxes gains on everything from the sale of property, retirement assets, and small businesses – the backbone of our economy. House budget writers assume $75 million in revenue, but they should look to what has happened in Washington when capital gains have been increased and decreased.

 

Presidents Kennedy and Clinton supported capital gains reductions and revenue increased. When President Reagan was forced by Congre ss in 1986 to accept a 40% increase in the capital gains rate in order to get his other tax proposals enacted, revenue declined. In fact four years after the 1986 capital gains rate increase from 20% to 28%, revenue to the Treasury was lower. Imagine that---higher taxes actually decreased revenue. That must be the definition of success!

 

In 2003 when Congress voted to lower the capital gains rate from 20% to 15% (one of the most important votes I cast in Congress), revenue more than doubled. Further, in 2003 when that overall tax reduction legislation passed, the unemployment rate was 6.3%. Four years later, the unemployment rate was 4.4%. Both revenue and jobs had increased. Yet today, in both Concord and Washington, some want to increase this tax despite the overwhelming evidence that it will cost both jobs and revenue.

 

I was recently speaking with a business owner who succinctly told me that if New Hampshire passed a capital gains tax, the tax climate for his business would be worse in New Hampshire than in California where his company also has interests. It is time to dismiss this tax summarily, which to its credit, the Senate Finance Committee did. However the nails have not been pounded into the coffin, as Capital Gains could be resurrected in a committee of conference.

 

Elimination of the BET Credit against the BPT: The Business Enterprise Tax is a .75% payroll tax employers pay on employees salary. Since implementation of the tax nearly 15 years ago, employers could take their BET obligations as a credit against the Business Profits Tax. New Hampshire’s General Fund depends on these two taxes for fully 25% of its tax revenue. From the smallest to the largest New Hampshire employers, businesses pay more than their fair share of taxes, without question.

 

Because of the aversion to cut spending, the revenue from the Capital Gains proposal had to be replaced. Thus, the Senate Finance Committee has recommended elimination of this tax credit which would c ost businesses $80 million. This $80 million tax hike is a double whammy for businesses already facing many millions in hikes for the employer costs of unemployment insurance.

 

Jim Roche, President of the Business and Industry Association said repeal of this tax credit “exacerbates an increasingly uncompetitive business climate” and said the “economic implications of this trend are alarming.” Roche cites New Hampshire’s recent ranking of 25th in the Small Business and Entrepreneurship’s 2009 Business Tax Index. This is one race to the bottom New Hampshire simply cannot afford to win.

 

Unfortunately, however, the majority of the committee supported this tax hike on businesses which will make it far more difficult to get our economy on track. Nearly 50,000 of our friends and neighbors are out of work. If this tax hike survives, they are far more likely to stay out of work.

 

Increasing the Rooms and Meals Tax: Proposed by Governor Lynch, passed by the House. Now it has the support of the majority of the Senate Finance Committee. This proposal would raise the tax on the hospitality industry by nearly 10%. At a time that people, including visitors to New Hampshire, are cutting back discretionary spending, hiking this tax will only make a tough business climate more difficult for restaurants and hotels. No area of our state will be more impacted than the Mount Washington Valley. Business owners in that region have told me unequivocally that New Hampshire will be less competitive for tourist spending for vacations, weddings, tours, and conventions. This is a $40 million mistake.

 

Increasing the Tobacco Tax: Proposed 45 cent hike by the Senate Finance Committee. This tax hike is estimated to raise $75 million but would be the fourth tobacco tax hike in five years. Smokers have to be saying enough already. Furthermore, our budget already counts on $160 million in revenue from this tax – a large portion coming from cross border sales of tobacco. A hike of this magnitude could mean the expected revenue gains go up in smoke as our competitive position is undermined.

 

All told these three tax hikes will cost $195 million and these are only the big three. There are numerous other tax and fee hikes on vehicle and boat registrations, tolls, salt water fishing licenses, septic and subdivision permits, and vanity license plates. A fund paid into by doctors to keep a lid on medical malpractice rates will be raided to the tune of $110 million virtually guaranteeing a lawsuit. State of New Hampshire retirees will see higher costs for their health care. Perhaps most insidiously, property taxpayers get badly dinged by increased retirement costs and a gaping $50 million hole in revenue sharing.

 

The New Hampshire unemployment rate stands at 6.4% and residents across the state are struggling to pay their mortgages while they worry about keeping their jobs. Now apparently the Governor is considering forcing the Real Estate Transfer tax to apply to mortgage refinancing – at a time people are refinancing to try to keep their homes. OUCH!

 

People naturally are asking why state government spending grew so much in the previous budget. Why is it projected to grow so much more in this budget? They further ask why can’t state government do what they are doing – cutting spending. That is the answer to this budget predicament.

 

On Wednesday, the Senate will be in session and will vote on all these tax proposals passed by the Senate Finance Committee. Let's hope they fail.

 

Tuesday
Jun022009

Hillsborough County Welcomes Goffstown District Court and Other News

The County has a new neighbor at the Hillsborough County Complex. The Goffstown Court moved from its old location in the lower level of Goffstown’s Town Hall to the second floor of the Bouchard Building. The court is one of six in the County and serves the towns of Goffstown, New Boston, Weare and Francestown.

 

The Bouchard Building is now a “secure facility” both for the protection of the public and the employees. When you visit any of the County offices, you will be greeted in the lobby by a Sheriff’s bailiff. Citizens will be asked to remove any metal objects from your person, bags will be inspected, and you will walk through a metal detector.

 

SUMMER CONCERTS IN THE GAZEBO RETURN TO MURSING HOME

 

Please come and enjoy a free concerts and upbeat music. The public is invited. Please bring a chair or a blanket.

The dates and artists follow:

June 8, 2009, National Guard Alumni Band – 6:30pm; June 26, 2009. Rich Araldia – 6:30pm; July 3. 2009, Doug Bishop – 6:30pm; July 13, 2009, Kevin Farley – 7:00pm; July 29, 2009, Richard King – 6:45pm; August 2, 2009, Ronnie Chase – 6:30pm; August 20, 2009, Rent Party Players – 6:30pm.

 

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY BUDGET PUBLIC HEARING

 

The Board of Commissioners has finished our budget discussions. The Executive Committee of the County Convention is now in possession of the budget and will hold a PUBLIC HEARING ON THE COUNTY BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS ON TUESDAY, JUNE 16TH. The meeting will be held at the Bouchard Building at 6:00pm in the Bouchard Building in the County Complex in Goffstown (329 Mast Road – Rt. 114).

 

Selectmen and members of the public are encouraged to attend the meeting which will be held in the Commissioners’ Conference Room. If you have any questions, please contact me at ccommish@rcn.com.