Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Perry Hosts Houston Small Business Summit

Tuesday, June 20, 2006  •  Press Release

HOUSTON – Gov. Rick Perry today hosted a small business summit in Houston aimed at providing area small businesses with the tools and knowledge for future success. Perry has held a series of summits around the state in support of small business.

“While we are here to talk about how to make our small businesses prosper, foremost on our minds right now is the safety and security of the people of Southeast Texas,” Perry said. “We want to continue to urge Texans to be cautious and to avoid low-lying flood-prone areas, recognizing that flood conditions can materialize in a matter of minutes.”

Perry thanked summit organizers and participants for the important role they play in the Texas economy.

“Texas prospers only when small business prospers. If Texas is to remain a place where jobs and opportunity are abundant, where the American dream is within reach for every family, and where government priorities are funded by a growing economy instead of a growing tax burden, then one of our greatest goals must be to help small employers succeed today,” Perry said.

Perry encouraged local small business owners to take advantage of opportunities presented at the summit, which offered advice on securing growth capital, utilizing health savings accounts, becoming certified as a Historically Underutilized Business and numerous other topics.

Perry also pointed out that representatives from 26 state agencies were present to help Houston-area businesses learn how to effectively bid for government contracts. “Whether it is for printing, construction, technical support or a wide variety of other opportunities, state contracts can add millions of new dollars to the local economy and serve as the catalyst that propels your business to new level of success,” Perry said.

Perry added that the school finance package passed by the Legislature – which cuts property taxes by 33 percent – is good for small businesses. “Small business was foremost on our minds as we implemented tax reform last month. That’s why we doubled the size of the small business exemption from $150,000 to $300,000 in gross receipts. Because of this change, a number of additional small businesses will pay nothing in taxes as they get their feet on the ground and grow,” Perry said.

The governor added that businesses that owe as much as $1,000 under the reformed business tax will not be charged a cent. And every time a business paying under the tax hires a new worker, invests in health insurance or funds worker pension plans, that business’s tax liability decreases.

“The possibilities for prosperity are endless if employers are not over-regulated and over-taxed. This is especially true for the small business that operates on a small margin,” Perry said. “Small business is vitally important to me, not just because I helped my dad run one, but because they represent the best of Main Street America. They are the incubator where ideas are tested, refined and perfected so that families can experience opportunity.”

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