Floor Updates

Moran, Warner, Coons, Blunt

Farm bill (S. 3240)

Jun 06 2012

04:05 PM

Colloquy: (Senators Moran, Warner, Coons, Blunt)
  • Spoke on the Startup Act.

Senator Moran: (3:40 PM)
  • SUMMARY "At a time in our nation in which our fiscal condition of the federal government is so serious, so much out of balance, we are spending so many more dollars than we take in, the deficit is holding back the growth of our country these facts are important because at this point in time because of our country's fiscal condition, we have an inability to grow the economy and we have seen little evidence that the administration and congress are willing to address our fiscal issues. I raise these facts because we have to act now in order to create jobs in this country, and the way to do that is to create an entrepreneurial and innovation environment in which people, Americans who have ideas want to take a product to market. In the process of pursuing their success, they put other Americans to work. We need to create the environment in which that can happen, and in the process of creating the benefits of new jobs in America, we will have a better fiscal condition than the one we find ourselves in today and prolong and avoid the chances that the United States become another Greece or other southern European country This legislation has a number of components related to the tax code, related to the regulatory environment, related to the global battle for talent, related to the ability for us to take the money that we spend, the taxpayer dollars that universities in conducting research and to encourage that that money be spent in a way for research that is able to be used in bringing new products to market, in commercialization and to create an environment in which states across the country can demonstrate their ... and find the place to build their companies."

Senator Warner: (3:46 PM)
  • SUMMARY "The facts show 80% of all in new jobs created in the last 20 years come from start-up businesses ... There are certain things that every start-up business needs. They need access to capital, access to talent, they need access to new ideas, they need to make sure we've got a stable regulatory environment that's not overly burdensome and in each way we move the ball in this legislation, both that we've passed and that we're working on right now ... This legislation, Startup 2.0, we take on a series of other issues. One of the issues is the question of talent. Every country in the world competes for talent. We attract some of the best talent in the world to come to the world-class universities we have. Oftentimes we then train them in science, technology, engineering and math with graduate degrees. I wish we could fill all those slots in American universities with native-born Americans. But we don't have enough and cons subsequently we train the best and brightest in the world and then send them home to start their businesses. I can tell you in Virginia where we are proud to have a vibrant high-tech community, a entrepreneurial community, literally a third of our high-tech firms in northern Virginia, one of our founders are first generation Americans. If we had the same policies 20 years ago we wouldn't have had that growth we had in the 1990's from technology."

Senator Coons: (3:49 PM)
  • SUMMARY "Last November Senator Rubio of Florida and I came together to put a package called the agree act before this Senate. We were pleased a number of the provision in that first agree act have subsequently become law. One to ease the path for IPO's, initial public offerings for high potential, high growth companies, another through executive order to strengthen intellectual property protection. And we're hopeful the Senate will consider another provision that dealt with bonus depreciation which is another way to help make investments in equipment for small businesses. And on top of that, Senators Rubio and I have now teamed up with Senator Moran and Senator Warner take some of the remaining provisions of the agree act and add them in with your Startup Act and now make an improved and broader Startup 2.0. The pieces that we brought to the party we're eliminating the per country caps for visas and making permanent the exemption of certain capital gains so investors can provide financial stability to qualified start-ups. There's a lot of good ideas in this bill. A lot of different ways it tackles the issues that my colleagues have already spoken to. Immigration, retaining high promise entrepreneurial folks who have come and learned in the United States. Moving the inventions and innovations on college campuses to the marketplace, more predictably, more swiftly, providing tax incentives for start-up businesses and putting things in the tax code that strengthen our welcoming environment for entrepreneurship. And regulatory relief. Senator Moran took the lead in making possible a provision in this bill that provides some regulatory relief for start-up businesses. In all, these provisions I think make for a terrific package. Thus the moniker 2.0."

Senator Blunt: (3:53 PM)
  • SUMMARY "I believe this bill, one of the reasons I decided to cosponsor the Startup Act 2.0, the second version of the Startup Act is I think it does some of the things we begin to need to do. 75% of all U.S. engineering and technology firms in the last decade, the decade that we have really good numbers on, the one that ended a few years that ended really in the numbers I have are 1995 to 2005, 75% of the engineering and technology start-ups were started by people who were born in another country. And this bill just simply creates a visa program that allows entrepreneurs who have good ideas and frankly have some money to go along with those good ideas to come to the United States of America and start those jobs, to take advantage of our great work force, to take advantage of the position that we have to be able to send products all over the world, and to do that here. This act also requires that we have a true cost benefit annual sis of rules and regulations. The federal government last year, of the 66 rules that cost more than $100 million, only 18 of them had what you could really describe as a cost-benefit analysis. And there are lots of things that would be fine to do but if the cost to the economy, if the cost to jobs, the cost to families is greater than the benefit, we shouldn't do them. So this bill says that, says let's go ahead, let's not let the cost of something overwhelm the benefit to the economy or become the negative impact on the economy. Long-term investment in this act was with start-ups would have some exemption from the capital gains so you're risking a lot of money with a start-up and this is saying okay, we want to raise the reward quotient of that risk so we encourage people to take the risk. If you're doing a start-up, the odds are pretty high that money may not ever come back. And so whatever you can do to encourage that that money be put on the table, that those jobs be created, in 2009, 651 start-ups were started with university research as a component. This just further opens the doors of grant dollars that are already available, of federal research and development funds, to be even more open to a university partner as part of that private sector effort."

Senator Moran: (3:58 PM)
  • SUMMARY "In the short time that those of us on the floor today have been in the United States Senate, about 14 months, seven countries have adopted new laws to attract entrepreneurs. We have not. Listen to this fact: a recent report from the World Bank shows America has slipped in the rankings in terms of start-up friendliness from first to 13th. This is about whether it's provisions in here about visas for those who are foreign born, this is very much about American jobs. This is about the opportunity for someone to start a company here and hire Americans and if you happen to be someone who is foreign born but highly educated in science, technology and engineering and entrepreneurial with money who wants to invest in the U.S. economy and agree to put people to work, we're saying our doors of the United States of America are open for business for purposes of hiring United States citizens. It is an important component and we do not want to lose this battle, as we see, these are ads from U.S. publications in which entrepreneurs are being lured to places outside the united states to start their companies... In my view, I would guess 80% of our colleagues here in the United States Senate at least would be supportive of the provisions in this legislation. And I think the senators on the floor this afternoon and others are out to prove that when there is broad support for commonsense ideas, we still are in a legislative body that can accomplish things and that as the Senator from Virginia is fond of saying, we didn't get the memo that says we don't work during an election year. The American people expect us to make the necessary accomplishments to grow the economy to, put Americans to work and to get our fiscal house in order."