Kolb Fights For Small Businesses, Manufacturing

Assemblyman stresses need to ease burdens on New York State businesses
March 9, 2009

Assemblyman Brian Kolb (R,C,I-Canandaigua) today led his Conference in advancing two amendments on the floor of the Assembly that would ease the burdens our state places on small businesses and manufacturing companies. Kolb, Chairman of the Assembly Minority Manufacturing Task Force, points out that New York’s unfriendly business environment has led to many young people and entrepreneurs fleeing the state in search of less expensive places to set up shop.

“Upstate New York is hurting the most from the state’s brain drain. In 2008, New York lost a net of more than 122,000 private-sector jobs, of which 20,000 were manufacturing jobs. The reason is apparent, New York is ranked among the top in the most expensive places to do business in the nation,” explains Kolb. “During tough economic times we need to focus on making New York an affordable place for businesses so that they can bring much-needed revenue and jobs to our region.”

Kolb presented legislation (A.3041) he drafted entitled the “Manufacturing Preservation and Enhancement Act of 2009”, which would create tax incentives for manufacturing firms enrolled in the program that maintain or increase employment. Such tax credits include Manufacturing Enhancement Incentive (MEI) for property, wage and energy tax credits under the New York Tax Law.

The second amendment advanced legislation (A.4694) known as “The Small Business Improvement Act.” This legislation would direct at least 15 percent of state contracts to businesses with 100 or fewer employees, provide education grants to micro-businesses, and allow for additional funding to help upgrade and renovate downtown and main street facades.

“Small businesses and manufacturing are the backbone of our state’s economy and particularly hit hard are upstate families who are struggling just to make ends meet. We need to take further action to help businesses succeed so that, together, we can put our failing economy back on track,” said Kolb.

Both amendments were ruled “not germane” by the Majority-controlled state Assembly in a procedural motion not based on the merits of the amendments. Kolb points out that this ruling clearly demonstrates the need to reform Albany so that bills are debated based on the merit of the idea and not on political maneuvering.