Atlanta, GA - Today Governor Brian P. Kemp, Lieutenant Governor Duncan, and Speaker David Ralston expressed their support of the passage of an economic relief package for businesses in the wake of COVID-19.

It includes a tax credit to incentivize personal protective equipment (PPE) manufacturers, including those existing Georgia manufacturers which did not traditionally manufacture PPE but began doing so in response to COVID-19. It would allow also businesses which are currently part of the Quality Jobs Tax Credit program to use their 2019 or 2020 job creation numbers to continue in the program in 2020 or 2021, ensuring that existing businesses affected by COVID-19 have flexibility as they create jobs in the state. Both measures were offered as a substitute to House Bill 846 in the Senate Rules Committee.

"Throughout our fight with COVID-19, Georgia businesses have faced a changing landscape forcing them to scale back operations and send hardworking Georgians home from work as they struggled to meet payroll," said Governor Kemp. "Meanwhile, countless manufacturers - large and small - across Georgia have stepped up to produce critical supplies and ensure that our state remains prepared to protect frontline healthcare workers and our most vulnerable populations. We could not be more grateful for their support."

"As we look to the future, it is incumbent upon us as state leaders to protect job creators in the state and ensure that Georgia stands ready to respond to future public health crises with a supply of PPE that can be deployed at a moment's notice. This legislative package will shore up those efforts, ensuring that those in the Georgia businesses who have adapted to meet these challenges head on know that we have their back. I encourage members in both chambers to adopt these measures swiftly to secure a safe, healthy, and prosperous future for Georgia," said Kemp.

“Businesses across our state have worked quickly and diligently to respond to the COVID crisis,” said Lt. Governor Duncan. “While many companies were able to work from home, our manufacturers worked day and night to provide essential supplies to those on the front line of this pandemic. Georgia is the best state to do business because of the resiliency of our businesses, large and small, who constantly evolve during times of crisis. I am grateful for the leadership of Governor Kemp and look forward to working with Speaker Ralston to get this economic relief package across the finish line.”

“Georgia is a state that rises to meet challenges, and the coronavirus pandemic is no exception,” said Speaker David Ralston. “Private businesses have adapted to meet the needs of their workforces and customers throughout this crisis. As we look ahead, we need to ensure our regulatory and tax policies support Georgia businesses as they get our economy growing again. I am proud to join Governor Kemp and Lt. Governor Duncan in calling for this economic relief package and will work with my colleagues in the General Assembly to pass it quickly.”

Throughout Georgia's response to COVID-19, the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) has headlined efforts to support businesses, identify companies which can restructure operations to produce PPE, and coordinate with those who already are. The Georgia Suppliers Interactive Map and List, compiled by GDEcD, includes more than 260 Georgia companies providing needed protective supplies along with an interactive map displaying business location and a tool to sort supplies by category.

"These measures present a clear message to those in the business community who have gone above and beyond to protect Georgia's families and frontline heroes and keep our workforce on the payroll that they have a home in Georgia," said GDEcD Commissioner Pat Wilson. "Incentivizing PPE production and safeguarding businesses which have taken a hit from the pandemic will ensure that Georgia's future is bright as we continue creating jobs and keeping the state prepared to face future public health challenges."

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