News and Notes February 8, 2016

News and Notes February 8, 2016
For decades, the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce has effectively built support around pro-business legislation and initiatives in effort to pave the way for a healthy business climate. Take a look at this week's legislative update.

Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce supports HB 858 (Landes R 25th)

Virginia International Trade Authority 

Legislation HB 858 establishes the Virginia International Trade Authority to promote international trade in the Commonwealth by coordinating private and public efforts to stimulate the international trade segment of the state’s economy and marketing products and services. The bill also requires the Authority to provide to the General Assembly by November 1, 2016, a plan for the establishment of a coalition of organizations providing international trade programs and services to the Commonwealth.

 

“The Research and Rational”

Virginia International Trade Profile -produced by the Virginia Chamber Foundation

The integration of international markets and the rapid expansion of global consumers are driving more states to more intentionally engage in the global economy. The vast majority of economic growth worldwide over the next several decades is projected to occur outside the United States. U.S. firms are taking advantage of this dynamic boosting national exports to $2.35 Trillion in 2014. In 2014, an average of 5,796 jobs were supported by every $1 Billion in U.S. exports. The estimated direct, indirect and induced economic impact of Virginia’s $35.9 Billion in direct exports in 2014 represented 6.4% of GSP, 8.5% of total state employment (320,963 jobs), $18.7 Billion in labor income, and $2 Billion in tax revenue. Nearly half of Virginia’s exports are in services. The top seven export subsectors in Virginia each generated over $1 Billion in exports in 2014. These include management and consulting, meat and poultry products, resins and synthetic rubbers, credit issuance and lending, freight and port services, R & D services and computer services.

The full report is available for download at: http://vachamber.com/foundation/studies

 

HRCC Supports Transportation Funding Solutions

The Hampton Roads Chamber supports the construction of all nine of the Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission projects. These transportation projects add up to a system of infrastructure improvements that are critical to our region’s future and quality of life. Decreases in gas prices and technical errors in the 2013 transportation legislation have resulted in lower than expected revenues (approximately $70 Million per year).

 

Senator Wagner Offers Gas Tax Plan to Fund Regional Road System

SB 742 Senator Frank Wagner (R 7th) has proposed a sliding scale gas tax for the Hampton Roads region. The measure moves away from the current 2.1 percent wholesale tax in favor of a sliding per-gallon scale.

If the wholesale price of gas is $2.50 or below, the tax would be 14 cents per gallon.

If the wholesale price of gas is $2.51 to $3.00, the tax would fall to 8 cents per gallon.

If the wholesale price of gas is above $3.00, the tax would fall to 5 cents per gallon.

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