Sen. Pryor proposes tax-credit bill to help small start-ups

Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) took to the Senate floor Wednesday to introduce legislation that would provide a 25 percent federal income-tax credit for “angel” investments in small, early-stage businesses.

Pryor said his bill would create “significant economic growth and job creation” and estimated that it would lead to up to $2 billion in additional capital formation for start-up companies.

“American ingenuity will bring us out of our economic slump and help our nation regain a global competitive edge,” said Pryor on the floor. “My legislation fosters this growth by ensuring entrepreneurs have the capital and opportunity to succeed.”

Pryor's American Opportunity Act would grant a 25 percent tax credit on up to $2 million per year in tax credit-eligible cash equity investments in certain early-stage business.

Because the bill would alter the IRS tax code, it will be referred to the Finance Committee, where it will likely face competition from dozens of other bills looking to cut taxes and create jobs.

A source close to Pryor said that although the legislation is not internally paid for, the senator hopes Democrats and Republicans would join him. Some colleagues have already expressed interest in cosponsoring the bill, he said.

Pryor said that if the right bill comes along, he might also consider attaching his bill as an amendment to expedite its passage.

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