President Ford believes the small business sector of our
strong economy is vital to job creation, competition and
The small business sector of the United States includes nearly
10 million enterprises, employs 58 percent of the private labor
force, produces approximately 48 percent of the gross business
product, and provides a livelihood for 100 million Americans.
To strengthen this vital part of our economy, President Ford
- Cut by 12 percent the number of forms required by
Federal reports, thereby reducing the paperwork burden on
America's businessmen and businesswomen, and eliminating
untold millions of dollars spent by the Federal agencies
just for reading, handling, and filing them.
- Proposed reducing the maximum corporate tax rate and
making permanent the currently temporary exemption on the
first $50,000 of income. If approved, these tax cuts will
affect thousands of small firms and help generate
thousands of more jobs.
- Proposed a change in the Federal estate tax laws to
make it easier to continue the family ownership of a
small farm or business. The proposed changes would
stretch out the estate tax payment period so that Federal
estate taxes could be paid out of the income of the farm
or business. No payment would be required for five years.
Twenty years would be allowed for full payment of estate
taxes at a 4 percent interest rate. This reform would
help insure the survival of smaller farms and businesses
for future generations and allow them to expand their
- In addition, the President has proposed eliminating
the 50 percent marital deduction on estate taxes, so that
100 percent of an estate could be transferred tax free to
a surviving spouse. He also has proposed an increase
in the estate tax exemption from $60,000 to $150,000.
- Proposed a 33 1/3 increase in the Small Business
Administration's leading guarantee authority - - from
$1.5 billion to $2 billion - - despite the austerity
budget he submitted to Congress. This will help stimulate
the private business sector and create more jobs.
- Named the Administrator of the U.S. Small Business
Administration to serve on the President's Economic
Policy Board which oversees the formulation,
coordination and implementation of the Administration's
economic policy. It is the first time small business has
been represented at such a high level of government.
- Asked for reduction in capital gains taxation at
an accelerating rate over a period of years. This would
remove the tax incentive for small business mergers and
made it possible for local interests to acquire and
expand sucessful [successful] small businesses. It would
unlock investments in business enterprises and permit the
most productive employment of capital resources.
- Proposed tax incentives to encourage broadened stock
ownership of low and middle income working, Americans by
allowing deferral of taxes on certain funds invested in
common stocks. Widespread stock ownership would
promote more stable financial markets, strengthen
economic, social, and political support for the free
market system, and help employees build a reasonable
But President Ford knows that the Government should not -- and
cannot -- run America's business:
"I will do my part, but the rest is up to you . . . I
challenge the businessmen and businesswomen of America, and
all the productive people of this great country, to roll up
your sleeves and show the world that our great free-enterprise
system is still hale and hearty, in this Bicentennial year
and for the future."
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Ford '76 Fact Book
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