BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) — Governor Deval Patrick privately signed into law an economic development bill Tuesday designed to create jobs and a more business friendly climate in Massachusetts. The bill makes investments like $50 million on research development and $1 million on a “talent pipeline” program that supplements stipends for technology start-up internships. State Representative Joe Wagner of Chicopee, the lead author of the bill, says there’s something in the legislation to help almost every industry in the state.
“There is something for manufacturing. There is something for the creative industry and the creative economy. There are things for higher education that will involve a state investment to secure research and other private grants,” said Wagner.
But Patrick used his veto power to strike out what he called “unaffordable tax benefits” in the bill – He decided not to extend tax credits for Brownfield cleanup projects and slashed a tax credit increase for new companies.
Patrick’s vetoes drew criticism from House Republicans. “By eliminating the opportunity for Massachusetts to create a business-friendly environment, Governor Patrick has proven that he is intent on advancing an agenda that is not favorable to the businesses and residents of the Commonwealth,” said House Minority Leader Brad Jones (R-North Reading).
The Patrick administration says they will reevaluate tax credits in general as part of a broader discussion in the future to see if the state can afford them.
“Legislature’s been part of this, business community and others, to look at our revenue – What comes in, what goes out, what revenue we decline to take in because of tax credits so that can take a fresh look at this,” said Lt. Gov. Tim Murray.
The jobs bill also creates a sales tax holiday this August 11th and 12th so that shoppers can forego the 6.25 percent sales tax on most retail purchases this weekend.
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