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Carpet & floor-covering industries laud HIRE Bill

11
Aug '09
Four major flooring associations – Carpet and Rug Institute, National Wood Flooring Association, Resilient Floor Covering Institute and World Floor Covering Association – have lauded the introduction of the Home Improvements Revitalize the Economy (HIRE) Act of 2009, H.R. 3382, a bill that would create a tax deduction of up to $4,000 for consumers who purchase qualified building products and home furnishings.

Lead sponsors of the HIRE Act are Georgia Congressmen Henry C. “Hank” Johnson (D) and Nathan Deal (R). Co-sponsors include: Reps. J. Gresham Barrett (R-SC), Sanford D. Bishop (D-GA.), William Lacy Clay (D-MO), Bill Pascrell Jr., (D-NJ), Bart Stupak (D-MI), John Barrow, (D-GA.), Travis Childers (D-MS), Howard Coble (R-NC), Robert Latta (R-OH) and Health Shuler (R-NC).

“This legislation is seeking to save or create 350,000 jobs, cut retail taxes and boost homes values,” said Rep. Johnson. Congressman Deal added, “The HIRE Act will offer incentives for consumers who would otherwise forgo spending in 2009 and 2010, allowing them to improve their home. And, in turn, jump start the home furnishings and building products market.”

The HIRE Act, which applies to households with incomes up to $300,000, provides a tax deduction of $2,000 per family and tax credits of $500 for the purchase of qualified home furnishings and building products such as carpet and resilient and wood flooring. These credits are doubled for products meeting certain environmental certification. Retailers would be eligible for related tax credits of up to $10,000 under provisions of the bill.

“The members of the Resilient Floor Covering Institute are very encouraged by the introduction of the HIRE Act. If successfully enacted, it will provide a much needed boost to our beleaguered industry which has been virtually ignored by the extraordinary stimulus initiatives already in place,” said Thomas S. Davis, President and CEO, Mannington Mills, Inc. and Chairman of the Board of the Resilient Floor Covering Institute.

“We urge all stakeholders in the interior furnishings industry to contact their Congressmen and Senators asking for their support of this Act. We are a large and important industry to the U.S. economy. It's important that we fight for our fair share.”

Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun applauded Congressmen Deal and Johnson for taking a bi-partisan approach to addressing the downturn in the floor covering industry. “Many households lost wealth in this economic recession and are hesitant to make household purchases. Giving consumers an incentive to invest in their home is a down payment on the future and will create much-needed demand that will spark manufacturing and sales.”

Ed Korczak, Executive Director/CEO of the National Wood Flooring Association, concurs. “Wood flooring, like many other products, is tied directly to the housing and construction industries, which have been down now forquite some time. We all know that as a result, consumers are being much more conservative in their spending right now. This Act is one small way that we can encourage consumers to spend on purchases that will improve their personal investment in their homes, while also helping to improve the state of our industry.”


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