The House has voted 62-7 in favor of HB 88, the governor’s “Hire One More Employee” or HOME tax credit bill, sending it across the rotunda to the Senate side. The measure revises the existing “Hire One” new jobs credit, adding an extra $1,000 credit if the new employee is a veteran, and revising the amounts and qualifications for the credit. “It makes it simpler,” said House Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, the bill’s House sponsor. “A new job is a benefit to the state of Idaho.” The bill’s estimated cost is $10.4 million a year.
Rep. Dell Raybould, R-Rexburg, said, “I think we’ve got to look at it from a business sense, that if you can spend a little money to create business, it will profit the state.” Said Rep. Grant Burgoyne, D-Boise, “I think it’s an investment in our future.”
Opponents included Rep. Lenore Barrett, R-Challis, who called the bill “government meddling in the free-enterprise system.” She said, “If we’re going to do tax breaks, let’s do tax breaks for everybody.” Rep. Lynn Luker, R-Boise, said, “What we’re doing is we’re handing out taxpayer money to folks who are probably going to hire somebody anyway.”
In the vote, those opposing the bill were Barrett, Luker, and Reps. Maxine Bell, R-Jerome; Steven Harris, R-Meridian; Shannon McMillan, R-Silverton; John Rusche, D-Lewiston; and Ed Morse, R-Hayden.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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