State Senator Matt Dolan Newsletter
I have enjoyed visiting with many different people, groups, advocates and school children in my first few months in office. Our state capitol is beautiful, and filled with a rich history. I encourage anybody to come down to Columbus for a visit and a tour of our building.
Along with our state’s operating budget, I have introduced two bills that I believe will spur economic and job growth in Ohio. I have also introduced a resolution that addresses what I believe is a pressing need for our state and national economies.
I want our businesses to have an opportunity to reinvest their own money for more jobs and to help our fast-growing and competitive alternative energy sector. That is why I introduced SB 132.
This bill establishes a five-year pilot program that allows taxpayers with facilities in a Foreign Trade Zone to claim a nonrefundable commercial activity tax (CAT) credit equal to the amount the business reinvests exclusively for additional and actual job creation. This credit may also be applied toward an investment in onsite renewable energy resources.
CAT is a revenue source for the state that is derived from business revenue.
There are nine Foreign Trade Zones in Ohio, including two in Northeast Ohio. They employ over 28,000 people in our state.
As technology allows more and more employees to work exclusively from home, it is important that incentives we provide for economic growth reflect that reality.
My other piece of legislation, SB 131, addresses the increasing impact of home-based employees in our changing economy. As such, this bill would allow for employers with certain home-based employees to qualify for the Job Creation Tax Credit (JCTC). If passed, the credit would extend to those taxpayers who propose a project to create new jobs in Ohio which includes work-from-home employees as a part of their hiring plan.
Incentivizing business to create jobs for Ohio work-from-home employees will significantly benefit Ohio, Ohio employees and Ohio residents, while expanding the Ohio tax base.
I also believe that the legislation will improve Ohio’s competitiveness with surrounding states. By removing geographical boundaries, employers are enabled to recruit more broadly, which enhances the talent pool, while at the same time increases employee productivity and job satisfaction.
To be eligible for the tax credit, any proposed project would still need to include all existing additional requirements; including Ohio residency and capital investment at the project site.
Finally, I, along with Senator Frank LaRose introduced SR 59, a resolution that encourages Congress to upgrade the Soo Locks. Located in Sault Ste. Marie in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, the locks are critical to the Great Lakes and United States economies. The Great Lakes are used to transport an estimated $5 trillion worth of goods over its waterways every year.
Products like iron ore, steel and grains are transported all around the Great Lakes region using these four locks. Of the four, there is only one operational lock, the Poe Lock, that is large enough to accommodate the vessels that are used to carry these products. Seventy percent of all vessels traveling across the Great Lakes use Poe Lock, leaving our region vulnerable if it were to become damaged.
That is why I am asking the president, Congress and the United States Office of Management and Budget to follow through with their plans for creating a second Poe-sized Lock in the Great Lakes. The creation of such would provide an extra, needed level of security to our nation’s economy.