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ICYMI: Tax reform helping Main Street and the energy sector grow

Tax reform helping Main Street and the energy sector grow
By U.S. Rep. Fred Upton
June 22, 2018
Washington Examiner

Six months ago, Congress kept a promise to voters by passing a sweeping, pro-growth reform of our tax code with the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act — the most significant tax reform since 1986. Thanks to our new tax law, people across the nation are feeling the real, positive effects.

For example, 90 percent of Americans are seeing bigger paychecks, and a growing list of more than 600 businesses have announced new investments in their employees, resulting in over 5.5 million American workers receiving bonuses, raises, and other benefits.

Furthermore, we are beginning to see tremendous economic growth as a direct result. Since signing the bill into law, 1 million new jobs have been created, with 223,000 jobs added last month alone. In addition, there are 6.7 million job openings and just 6.4 million available workers to fill them, meaning there are more jobs than people out of work — something the American economy has never experienced before.

It’s not just workers who are seeing the benefits following this historic action. Small businesses are also experiencing unprecedented optimism as a result of tax reform. A recent survey reports that Main Street optimism increased in May to the second highest level in history.

Recently, the Energy and Commerce Committee heard from businesses — particularly small businesses — in the energy sector on how tax reform is helping their operations grow and invest in local communities and workers. Tom Ferguson, the president and CEO of AZZ, explained that prior to tax reform his company had hoped to expand his business by building another manufacturing facility at some undetermined future date. However, thanks to tax reform, AZZ recently announced they will open another facility this year and plan to hire 25 to 50 new employees.

Under our old tax code, American businesses were struggling to stay competitive globally, but by reducing the tax burden we’ve eliminated the temptation for companies to look overseas. They are better able to keep good-paying jobs here at home.

But the wins don’t stop there. Major electric companies across the country have credited a lower corporate tax rate as the reason for lowering their prices and giving consumers a break. In my home state, several utilities, such as DTE Energy, have publicly announced their plans to pass on their savings to families in Michigan. But DTE Energy isn’t the only utility passing along tax reform savings to consumers. More than 100 companies in almost every state have now lowered or plan to lower their rates. This means lower electric bills, lower gas bills, and lower water bills for families. While these rate cuts may appear small, they amount to more money in the wallets of millions of Americans.

Thanks to tax reform, the United States’ economy has come roaring back to life, wages are rising, and job creation is at historically high levels. The American people finally have a tax system that treats them fairly and provides them with real, tangible relief. We will continue to pursue a pro-worker, pro-growth agenda that allows the economy to thrive and Americans to secure the jobs they need.

It’s clear the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is reinvigorating our economy — and this is only the beginning of even more good things to come.

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