Economy and Jobs
Generating jobs and strengthening the economy is one of my top priorities in Congress. Ensuring that the economy improves is vital and no political party has a monopoly on good ideas. Here in Southern Arizona, we have a unique and diverse economy to grow. From high tech and bioscience, the University of Arizona, our military and defense industry, and the burgeoning industry of solar, we have a lot of places to look to grow our economy.
As a former small business owner, I am committed to working with local business to make sure they have the resources they need to be successful.
Member of Congress
If you are having trouble receiving unemployment or other benefits, please click here, or contact Congressman Barber's offices in Tucson at 520-881-3588 or in Sierra Vista at 520-459-3115.
Supporting Small Business
Small businesses are critical to a robust Arizona economy and play a key role in its recovery. They drive innovation and create jobs. As a former small business owner, Congressman Barber understands the challenges of making payroll and expanding a business in difficult economic times and will continue to fight to promote opportunity and prosperity for all Southern Arizona businesses and workers. He is a member of the House Small Business Caucus, a bipartisan group of members that support policies to encourage small business growth and development.
Fighting for the Middle Class
With the economy still in recovery, hardworking families in Southern Arizona are feeling the burden of low wages and ever-increasing costs. Our country has a long history of supporting the middle class and we must continue this commitment. With every issue Barber faces in Congress – from health care to education to energy – he is focused on increasing affordability and rebuilding the middle class. That’s why Congressman Barber supports extending the tax cuts enacted in 2009 that provided more than $2 billion in tax relief for Arizona’s middle class and military families, including the child tax credit and tax credits to help families pay for college.
On Aug. 2, he voted to extend tax cuts for small businesses and middle-class Americans. The bill, the Middle Class Tax Cut Act, would extend the Bush-era tax cuts for families earning less than $250,000 annually and extend the child tax credit and the college affordability credit. Congressman Barber opposed the GOP plan that would add $1 trillion to deficit to give millionaires and billionaires a tax break, while raising taxes on middle class Americans by allowing several 2009 tax cuts to expire.
Promoting Clean Energy Jobs
Ending our dependence on foreign oil and promoting renewable energy is critical to our national security and economic growth. Arizona is the nation’s sunniest state, with Tucson being one of the nation’s sunniest cities. Our state has the potential to become a world leader in the research, development, and production of solar power and to bring clean energy manufacturing jobs to Arizona. As a member of the Sustainable Energy and Environment Caucus, Congressman Barber is working with his colleagues in Congress to invest more in renewable energy like solar and create the good-paying jobs of the future.
Congressman Barber has also relaunched the Solar Power 101 series in Southern Arizona. Solar 101 was started in November 2007 by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. These community programs provide vital how-to information to those interested in finding out more about solar. Congressman Barber had solar panels installed on his own home and has seen firsthand what a difference it makes in reducing energy costs. To attend a Solar 101 event near you, please see the events page.