Sen. Evan Bayh and U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly, both Democrats representing Indiana, have introduced two pieces of legislation supporting the RV industry.
Donnelly and Bayh were successful in including a tax deduction for new motorhomes in last year’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, but the benefit expired at the end of 2009. To continue to protect jobs throughout Indiana’s important RV industry, Thursday (Feb. 25) they introduced legislation that would renew for two more years the tax benefit for new motorhomes and also expand it to include new towable RVs and truck campers, according to a joint release by the officials.
The legislation would make amounts paid on state sales and excise taxes deductible and could be claimed on up to $49,500 of the price of a new purchase. The tax relief could be claimed by both itemizers and non-itemizers, and they could save up to $1,100.
“Making new RVs more affordable for two additional years will assist the RV industry in bouncing back from this recession,” said Donnelly, whose congressional district includes Elkhart County. “We are seeing positive results from last year’s tax benefit, but we’re not out of the woods yet. By continuing to provide tax relief to new customers, we will protect and create jobs in north central Indiana.”
“With the RV industry adding jobs and showing signs of recovery, now is the time to ensure the momentum continues,” Bayh said. “Elkhart County is the ‘RV capital of the world,’ and Congress must do more to nurture the industry’s recovery. This legislation builds on last year’s important tax relief to protect and grow RV sales and create jobs for the hard-working Hoosiers who keep this industry moving forward.”
“Continuing the sales and excise tax deductions for motorhomes and expanding this provision to include travel trailers and truck campers are exactly what the RV industry needs,” said Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) President Richard Coon. “It will improve the economic environment in our industry, stimulate RV sales and help speed the RV market’s recovery.”
Bayh and Donnelly also introduced HR 1073/SR 410, a resolution honoring the 100th anniversary of RVs.
“I’m proud to represent the ‘RV capital of the world,’ which has benefited the north central Indiana economy for years,” said Donnelly. “I am pleased to recognize the 100th anniversary of a vehicle that has brought both jobs and recreation to our area.”
“The RV industry is an important driver of Indiana’s economy and an important source of recreation for families across the country,” Bayh said. “I congratulate the RV industry on its first 100 years, and I look forward to even more success in the years to come.”
In 2009, Bayh received the National Legislative Award from the RVIA.
Donnelly is seeking re-election this year. Bayh announced earlier he will not seek re-election.
U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., has pledged to continue his fight for the RV industry.
“During tough times like these, workers at Indiana’s RV factories, supplier plants and dealerships are counting on their leaders to make Washington work for them, not the other way around,” Bayh said in a statement this week. “There is more work to do, and I pledge to continue my efforts on Capitol Hill to protect local jobs as we work together to get more RVs on the road again.”
Bayh was one of three recipients of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) National Legislative Award for his ongoing advocacy on behalf of the RV industry, particularly with regard to stimulus legislation and Small Business Administration rule changes that now allow RV dealers greater accessibility to federally guaranteed floorplan loans. The award was given during RVIA’s Advocacy Day activities in Washington, D.C., last week.
In his statement, Bayh added, “Hoosiers should be proud of our heritage as a great manufacturing state. We make things, and we make them well. Few industries in Indiana have endured greater hardship in recent months than the one that makes our family camping vehicles. Elkhart County is the recreational vehicle capital of America. Since the recession began, more than half of the RV industry’s workers have been laid off. Thousands of Hoosiers have lost their jobs.
“When dealerships can’t obtain financing to purchase new stock for their showroom floors, it creates a harmful ripple effect across the industry. In April, I asked the new head of the Small Business Administration to expand a lending program to help RV dealers get access to credit. Less than two months later, the SBA delivered. I was pleased to stand with senior White House officials in Kokomo last month to announce a new national program to help RV and auto dealers finance new inventory purchases. I was also pleased to author and pass a new tax break to spur RV purchases, saving middle-class families up to $1,100 on a new vehicle. Both steps should help Hoosier workers, as well as the families and communities that depend on them.”
Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., a member of the Senate Small Business Committee, Thursday (May 14) praised the Small Business Administration (SBA) for expanding the agency’s largest lending program, a decision that will expand access to capital for more than 70,000 additional American small businesses — including many RV and automobile dealerships across the country.
The SBA last week announced an expansion of its 7(a) loan program, effective next week through Sept. 30, 2010, according to a press release. The temporary 7(a) loan size standard will allow businesses to qualify based on net and average income. Under the new rules, a small business qualifies for SBA loan assistance if:
- The company and its affiliates have a net worth not exceeding $8.5 million and
- The company and its affiliates’ net income over the preceding two completed fiscal years does not exceed $3 million after federal income taxes (excluding any carry-over losses)
It is estimated that 50% of RV manufacturers and 75% of RV dealers will now qualify for loans under the SBA’s expanded criteria.
“To turn around our economy and help middle class Hoosiers make ends meet, we have to free up capital for small businesses, which are the primary engine of Indiana’s economic growth,” Bayh said. “This is a significant expansion of the largest federal loan program to help small businesses meet payroll and other operating costs. This move by the SBA will provide a lifeline to Indiana’s auto dealers, parts suppliers, and RV manufacturers and help thousands of middle class families who rely on these industries to make a living.”
“We’re encouraged that the SBA is expanding the definition of businesses that qualify for SBA loans to support investments in working capital, machinery and equipment,” said Richard Coon, president of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). According to Coon, the direct consequence of the current credit squeeze for worthy companies has been lost jobs with RV manufacturers, suppliers and dealers.
“The new loan criteria couldn’t come at a more important time,” Coon added. “When coupled with an emergency rule being considered to permit 7(a) guarantees for dealer floor-plan inventory purchases, these new SBA changes will benefit a large segment of RV manufacturers, dealers and suppliers.”
Bayh continues to urge the SBA to expand the 7(a) loan program to include purchases of floorplan inventory, a change that would provide much-needed working capital for RV dealers and result in the retention of thousands of jobs nationally, including many in Indiana.
For more information about SBA’s revisions to its small business size standards, visit http://www.sba.gov/size/indexwhatsnew.html and click on “Small Business Size Standards.”