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ASA Applauds Obama Administration

Mon December 28, 2009 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) applauded President Obama for including several priority programs recommended by ASA in the administration’s job recovery plan announced on Dec. 8, 2009.

“ASA knows that there are limits to what government can and should do in these difficult economic times,” said ASA Executive President E. Colette Nelson. “ASA applauds President Obama for including in the jobs recovery plan responsible steps that will help speed the recovery of the construction industry, which has lost hundreds of thousands of jobs over the past two years. A healthy construction industry is critical to the nation’s economic recovery.”

ASA delivered a letter to the White House on Dec. 2, the day before the national jobs summit, urging the administration to help rejuvenate commercial construction markets with policies that will “responsibly encourage and accelerate the creation of jobs in the construction industry.”

ASA’s recommendations included:

• Make Permanent Small Business Expensing. While short of ASA’s goal of permanent, heightened small business expensing, the president’s proposal to extend this tax deduction would allow subcontractors to immediately write off up to $250,000 of qualified investments such as construction equipment, through 2010.

• Extend Bonus Deprecation Through 2011. The president called for an extension of this tax provision that accelerates the rate at which businesses can deduct the cost of capital expenditures such as leasehold improvements. ASA urged an extension of this program through 2011.

• Increase Infrastructure Investment. The president proposed new investments in infrastructure projects that include water, aviation, highway, transit and rail. ASA also recommended investments to expedite the repair and maintenance of federal government buildings.

• Increase Energy-Efficiency Tax Deduction. The president supports expanding the tax incentives for investing in renewable manufacturing facilities. ASA also recommended an increase from $1.80 to $3.00 per sq. ft. in the current tax deduction for installing energy-efficient systems in commercial buildings.

• Extend the Term Asset Backed Securities Loan Facility Program. The president called for “continued Treasury efforts to use the TARP to support small business lending.” Extending TALF would provide financing to encourage investors to re-enter the commercial construction market.

As Congress debates the president’s jobs recovery plan, ASA will urge legislators to adopt these and other reforms recommended by ASA, such as making permanent the federal Build America Bonds program and the Qualified School Construction Bonds program.

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