Merkley: Bipartisan Jobs Bill “Just the Beginning” of Efforts to Tackle Unemployment

Washington, D.C. –
Today, the U.S. Senate approved the HIRE Act by a vote of 70-28.  Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement regarding the jobs bill vote:

“It’s refreshing to see members of Congress put politics aside and come together to put Americans back to work.

“The HIRE Act will help create jobs in a few ways:  it enacts a payroll tax holiday to encourage hiring and retention of new employees; it maintains expensing of investments to encourage small business growth; it extends the Highway Trust Fund to continue investments in roads and bridges; and it expands the Build America Bonds program to allow states to go ahead with job-creating infrastructure projects.

“Each of these four elements in the bill has enjoyed broad bipartisan support and I’m encouraged to see that support carry over into legislative action.

“The HIRE Act isn’t the end of our effort to create jobs.  In fact, it’s just the beginning.  

“Congress should immediately take up several more bills to make our economy work for working Americans, support growth in our small businesses, and put people back to work.  

“There are two job creation ideas that we should get to right away.  One is to provide low-cost financing for energy efficient renovations to homes and businesses to lower energy costs and create construction jobs right away.  The other is to assist community banks so they can lend to small businesses looking to expand and hire new workers.

“It is my sincere hope that we can continue this positive bipartisan collaboration.  There are no ‘blue’ or ‘red’ jobs.  We need intensive bipartisan problem solving to put Americans back to work.”