Nearly every chance he gets, Rep. Robert Dold (R-Kenilworth) tells people the most important issue facing the federal government is jobs and the economy.
Dold introduced legislation Thursday to reimburse employers for hiring and training new workers and explained it to a round table of employers and potential job seekers today in Lincolnshire. Schneider discussed some of his ideas with Patch this morning as well.
Under Dold’s proposal, a person who has been out of work for at least six months can go to an existing job center like the Illinois Department of Employment Security and obtain a certificate worth $7,000 to a prospective employer.
There is a catch to redeeming the certificate, according to Dold. A business must hire the person, offer training to develop the worker’s productivity, the person must be at the job at least six months and earn at least $15,000 in the first 10 months of employment.
“We want to give employers a tool to create jobs they can use,” Dold said. “We want to make sure it’s simple. We’re giving an opportunity to get valuable skills and something for the business willing to take the chance on them (the new hire).”
The proposed legislation will create a pilot program at 10 sites throughout the country to determine if it is feasible. If it works, Dold will push for expansion. He likes the idea because the government can gauge its success.
“It will be measurable,” Dold said of the program. “Often (the success) of programs cannot be measured. Here there will be very measurable results. Our goal is getting more people trained and back to work.”
Funding for the program will come from unspent money already allocated to job training. No action can be taken before the election because Congress will not return to Washington before then.
Schneider Sees Key Role for Small Business
Schneider, like Dold a small business owner, recognizes the importance of small business growth for economic recovery. He believes the last 19 months of economic growth is showing some improvement but more must be done.
“If we get small businesses growing, hiring more workers and paying higher wages, then we can turn this economy around,” Schneider said. “In order to do that, the government can offer targeted tax incentives to small businesses that are looking to grow, hire more workers and pay higher wages.”
When it comes to the long term unemployed, Schneider also believes training for jobs which are available is critical to put people whose skills are no longer useful into productive employment.
“I believe we can help people who have been unemployed for months or even years by working to make higher education and technical or vocational training more accessible and crafting job training programs to ensure that American workers are qualified to fill the skilled job openings currently available,” Schneider said.
Dold Releases Tax Returns, Schneider Declines
In other campaign related news, Dold released his income tax returns for the last three years while Schneider claimed the financial disclosure forms he filed with Congress as required by law was sufficient, according to a Chicago Tribune story.
“Anything voters would want to know about my finances, they can easily find in the personal disclosure forms that I filed with the House,” Schneider told Patch today. “Congressman Dold knows that he can't run on the specifics of his own record, so he's clearly just trying to make political hay out this to distract people from the fact that he votes with Republicans on every key issue."
Those disclosure forms show a range of income though nothing specific for Schneider or his wife, Julie Dann, a managing director at Mesirow Financial. They do show investment income between $200,000 and $550,000 per year for the family.
The Dold family showed income of $246,000 on its 2011 tax return, according to the Tribune story. Dold’s Congressional salary is $174,000 per year.
The Dold campaign did not furnish Patch with the tax returns when requested. The Schneider campaign provided the disclosure statements.