Senator Toomey is working to streamline burdensome regulations and reform tax policies that are hindering job creation and economic growth in this country. Senator Toomey has cosponsored legislation that would reform our tax code for small businesses, undo Washington's costly health care mandates, cut through red tape that undermines economic growth and affordable energy, and eliminate costly taxes and regulations that directly impact jobs in Pennsylvania. Senator Toomey also supports simplifying the tax code and lowering tax rates for all Americans to encourage economic growth and make American companies more competitive.
Senator Toomey is committed to restoring economic growth and private-sector job creation in this country and putting our federal government on a sustainable fiscal path. These two goals are inextricably connected. We cannot maximize economic growth without getting our government's finances in order, and we can't get our finances in order if we don't maximize economic growth and reform unaffordable programs.
One of the primary drivers of economic growth and job creation is small businesses. Unfortunately, our nation's tax code is a labyrinth of outdated and confusing rules that drain job creators of the time and money they need to hire more workers and grow. To fix this problem, Senator Toomey has introduced the bipartisan Start-up Jobs and Innovation Act. This legislation would make it easier to create a small business by doubling the amount of start-up expenses new companies can deduct, would make it easier to expand an existing business by permanently renewing sec. 179 expensing provisions, and would ease tax compliance burdens by allowing more small businesses to use the simpler cash accounting method.
The Start-up Jobs and Innovation Act follows up on Senator Toomey's successful efforts in passing the bipartisan JOBS Act to provide relief for small businesses. The core of the JOBS Act included three bills that Senator Toomey had introduced. The Small Company Capital Formation Act (with Senator Tester), the Reopening American Capital Markets to Emerging Growth Companies Act (with Senator Schumer), and the Private Company Flexibility and Growth Act (with Senator Carper) all cut regulatory burdens on small businesses and make it easier for them to raise much-needed capital.
Our nation faces a daunting fiscal challenge that can no longer be ignored. The federal government ran a staggering $435 billion deficit in 2015, bringing the total government debt to more than $18 trillion. In addition to slowing economic growth and crowding out private investment, our financial situation is eroding people's faith in our economy and undermining the credibility of our government. It would be tragic to pass along such massive, unsustainable debt on to our children and grandchildren and leave them with a country that is poorer and less productive than the one their parents inherited.
Moreover, if left unchecked, our runaway debt will eventually have to be paid for with trillions of dollars in tax increases. These tax increases will further hamper job creation and permanently lower the standard of living for all Americans.
Senator Toomey believes that it is imperative that we bring spending under control and have a federal government that lives within its means. That is why Senator Toomey has cosponsored a balanced budget amendment to the U. S. Constitution that would require the federal government to stop spending money it doesn't have. He is also proud to have supported the fiscal year 2016 budget resolution that provides a blueprint to rein overspending and reach a balanced budget within 10 years.
Senator Toomey realizes the importance of cutting wasteful spending and ending the all-to-common use of budget gimmicks. Senator Toomey introduced the bipartisan Earmark Elimination Act which would permanently ban earmarks. He also led the effort to curtail one of the most outrageous spending gimmicks - Congress' routine raiding of the Crime Victims Fund. The Fairness for Crime Victims Act ensures that the fines collected by federal courts from criminals are disbursed to those who have been victimized by crime, rather than being used to offset the cost of other spending. This legislation passed in the Budget Committee in 2015. Additionally, Senator Toomey has cosponsored the Bonuses for Cost-Cutters Act to provide bonuses for federal employees who identify wasteful spending and also has supported legislation to put an end to wasteful taxpayer subsidies, such as those for ethanol.