REP. WALORSKI DISCUSSES BIPARTISAN BILL TO HELP VETERANS START BUSINESSES

Representative Jackie Walorski (R-IN) met with Express Employment Professionals franchise employees in Elkhart, Indiana on August 19 to discuss her bill, the Veteran Entrepreneurs Act, co-sponsored by Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA).

The Veteran Entrepreneurs Act helps veterans make the successful transition to business ownership by providing them a 25 percent tax credit on their initial franchise fee, which the prospective veteran franchisee can elect to pass to the franchisor in exchange for a discount of equivalent value up front. This ensures the benefit of the tax credit is received directly by the veteran franchisee, reducing the financial burden of starting a business.

“There’s so much sacrifice from veterans and their family,” Walowski said during the event. “They come home and the government promises all these great things that they are going to do to greet them, and many times, the government is not holding up their end of the bargain.”

Walorski toured the office of Express Employment Professionals, a staffing company that helps connect jobseekers with employers while discussing the impact  the Veteran Entrepreneurs Act would have on America’s veterans. “This is a way to help continue to say thank you and do everything we can to help veterans get into an entrepreneur position so they can become CEOs and job creators. It’s just a win-win,” Walorski said.

More than 6,500 veterans have become franchise business owners since 2011, and 14 percent of the country’s 733,000 franchise establishments are veteran-owned.

Norm Robertson, owner of three Express Employment franchises in Indiana and an Air National Guard veteran who served in Desert Storm, said about 20 percent of the people he employs are veterans, and praised Walorski’s efforts in helping them advance as entrepreneurs.

 “The truth is veterans give back to communities in many different ways,” Robertson said. “Having the Congresswoman here and being able to shine additional light on the veteran community is tremendous.”

The bill has been referred for consideration to the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee.