NFIB is the voice of small business at the nation’s Capitol, in the courts and in state legislatures. We keep track of legislation and policy that affects small business so you don’t have to. Read about some of small business’ victories below.
Report on the 110th Congress: Small Business Victories
What lawmakers did to help your business
The 110th Congress saw many bills affecting small business, and NFIB was involved in championing many of the ones that were beneficial—and blocking several that were harmful. As Congress winds down, NFIB looks back at several pieces of pro-small business legislation passed in the last two years.
- Economic Stimulus Package for the American People Act of 2008
The economic stimulus package doubled the current small business-expensing limit from $125,000 to $250,000. This provides small business owners with an immediate deduction for the entire cost of certain investments made in their business, such as purchasing new equipment. It also provides for a 50 percent bonus depreciation for certain investments in business. This means a business can take an immediate deduction of 50 percent of the investment, rather than deducting the value over a number of years.
- H.R. 1424, the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
This provision helped local community banks clear worthless government-sponsored assets from their balance sheets by treating these losses as ordinary losses instead of capital losses. Substantial provisions have been added to give the taxpayers significantly greater protections, including real oversight with teeth.
- H.R. 3548, the Plain Language in Government Communications Act
This bill requires the federal government to write documents using simple and easy-to-understand language, and common documents like tax returns and veterans benefit forms are covered by this legislation. This will save small business owners time and money currently wasted on trying to make sense of unclear government letters, publications, forms, notices and instructions.
- IRS Increases Standard Mileage Rates
The IRS announced in June that they were raising the standard mileage rates for businesses from 50.5 cents to 58.5 cents. NFIB, working with members of both the U.S. House and Senate, strongly encouraged the IRS to take this immediate action to help small business owners struggling with record high gas prices.
- Patching the AMT with no tax increases
NFIB worked hard to prevent a massive tax increase on many small business owners by urging congress to pass an Alternative Minimum Tax patch. NFIB’s efforts were critical in ensuring Congress did not raise taxes to pay for this tax relief. Without this patch, 23 million taxpayers would have been subject to the AMT.
- Extension of the Internet tax moratorium
NFIB pushed Congress to extend the Internet tax moratorium for seven years, which will prevent most state and local governments from levying new taxes on Internet access or taxes that target Internet use.
- The tax gap
NFIB was successful in blocking several tax-gap proposals that would harm small business. The tax gap is the amount of tax owed to the federal government versus the amount of tax actually collected. In effort to increase collection, a number of proposals were introduced that could have a negative impact on small businesses.
- Blocking H.R. 2768
In opposing H.R. 2768, the Supplemental Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act, NFIB successfully blocked a proposal that would have bypassed a more deliberative process used to set exposure limits on certain substances in the workplace.
- Small business expensing
NFIB also worked diligently to ensure Section 179 was extended and that new limitation amounts were increased in the final version of the minimum-wage bill. Section 179 enhanced expensing for small businesses, was increased from 100,000 to $125,000 for 2007 and also increased the investment limitation from $450,000 to $500,000. Since the enhanced expensing is reduced once the owner hits the investment limitation, this change will allow them to invest more money into their business before the reduction is triggered. Section 179 was scheduled to expire after 2009, but has been extended through 2010 and the new limitation amounts were indexed for inflation.