For Immediate Release
AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development (LCRED) Committee on Thursday afternoon voted against a vital job creation bill on party lines. Democrats on the committee voted against, and all five Republicans voted for, a bill that would extend the availability of Tier 2 Pine Tree Development Zone business tax credits through 2018.
"Today's vote was a big surprise because the bill was introduced by Democrats with bipartisan support," said Rep. Amy Volk of Scarborough, ranking House Republican on the LCRED Committee. "This follows a pattern that even when Democrats come up with a good jobs proposal, other Democrats work to kill it."
The Pine Tree Zone's Tier 2 benefits apply to businesses in York and Cumberland Counties that demonstrate they have created good jobs with benefits that would not have existed but for the credit. Businesses currently receiving them will continue to be able to claim them. However, Democrats' actions today would prevent other businesses from being able to use the tax incentives to create new jobs.
"This is just another example of Democrats working to prevent job creation and economic development in Maine," said Rep. Lawrence Lockman (R-Amherst) of the LCRED Committee. "After decades of one-party liberal rule, Maine is just not competitive without incentives like this."
In 2012, according to the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), Pine Tree Development Zone Tier 2 businesses in York and Cumberland County pumped $49 million in annual payroll and $45 million in new investment into southern Maine's economy. The businesses employ over 670 Mainers, providing good jobs with benefits.
Maine House Republicans
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