"Dear Colleague: Cosponsor Legislation to Support Small Businesses and Local News"
Reps. Claudia Tenney, a Republican, and Suzan DelBene, a Democrat, sent this “Dear Colleague” letter to members of the House of Representatives asking for cosponsors to the Community News & Small Business Support Act (H.R. 4756). The federal bill will provide tax credits to small businesses that advertise in local news outlets, as well as a refundable payroll tax credit for local news organizations that hire and retain reporters and editors.
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We invite you to cosponsor H.R. 4756, the Community News and Small Business Support Act, bipartisan legislation which would provide tax incentives to help support local news organizations.
The numbers are stark – each week, an average of two community newspapers shuts down. At least 1,800 communities have no local news source, while thousands more have minimal local reporting. Filling this void are voices who often lack a deep understanding of the local communities they’re covering.
Undoubtedly, the lack of local news organizations has been a detriment to many communities. Studies have shown that when local news declines, communities are more likely to believe in government inefficiency, while local participation in civic organizations falls. On top of that, the stories that can bring people together – such as those about high school sports, local entertainment, or local small business openings – don’t get the coverage they deserve.
To combat this, H.R. 4756 would provide a tax credit to local news organizations to help defray the costs of hiring and retaining local reporters to cover our communities. It would also establish a tax credit for restaurants, grocery stores, and other small businesses to encourage them to advertise with local news organizations. Through these provisions, important aspects of our local communities can be revitalized by helping small businesses reduce the costs of getting customers in the door, while simultaneously boosting the ecosystem for local news.
If you have any questions or would like to cosponsor H.R. 4756, please contact Stephen Simonetti (Stephen.Simonetti@mail.house.
Member of Congress