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Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank Visits University of Toledo to Highlight the American Jobs Act

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Blank also meets with local business leaders as part of White House Business Council outreach effort

Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank today toured the University of Toledo Clean and Alternative Energy Business Incubator, a program that supports collaboration between clean energy companies and the university in order to help grow the clean and alternative energy industry in the region.  Since its opening in 2005, the incubator has had a regional economic impact of more than $700 million.   

At the University of Toledo, Blank discussed details of President Obama’s American Jobs Act.  Blank highlighted the different ways the plan could make an immediate impact on job creation: cutting taxes for small businesses, putting more money in the pockets of consumers through an expanded payroll tax cut, and preventing the layoffs of teachers, firefighters and policemen, while putting construction workers to work through much-needed renovations to school, roads, railways and airports. Blank underlined the need for Congress to act quickly on the bipartisan measures in the Jobs Act.

The plan would:

  • Slash the payroll tax in half for 98 percent of businesses, benefitting 200,000 Ohio companies;
  • Allow localities to avoid laying off teachers, firefighters and cops – 14,200 in Ohio alone;
  • Modernize at least 35,000 public schools, supporting renovations across the country and as many as 12,800 jobs in Ohio;
  • Put the long-term unemployed – a group that totals 250,000 in Ohio – back to work by making the most innovative reforms to unemployment insurance in 40 years;
  • Extend unemployment insurance, preventing five million Americans, including 80,000 in Ohio, from losing their benefits; and,
  • Cut payroll taxes in half for 160 million workers next year, giving the typical Ohio family a $1,430 tax cut.

“Outside experts say the American Jobs Act would put nearly 2 million people to work, while putting more money in the pockets of workers and repairing infrastructure vital to enhancing America’s competitiveness,” Blank said. “It’s time for Democrats and Republicans in Congress to come together and pass the bipartisan measures in the Jobs Act.”

Additionally, Blank hosted a White House Business Council roundtable meeting with local business leaders to discuss the American Jobs Act in further detail, challenges facing America’s business community, ways to improve U.S. economic competitiveness and the help that is available to businesses from agencies across the federal government.