US House Budget Committee Chair John Spratt of South Carolina has voted for the Small Business Financing and Investment Act. Spratt says it will give small businesses greater access to the loans and investment dollars they need to expand and grow their operations. The bill passed the House October 29th. Spratt says it will help to open tight credit markets that have shut out small business owners during the recession, allowing them to create jobs, particularly in struggling regions and industries.
“Small businesses are the number one source of new jobs,” said Spratt. “By helping them grow, we are putting Americans back to work, supporting innovation, and laying the groundwork for a new prosperity.”
Spratt said small businesses create 60-80% of all the new jobs every year, but the current economic crisis has frozen credit and made it difficult for them to get the financing they need. By comprehensively updating the Small Business Administration’s capital access programs, the legislation is expected to support $44 billion in lending and investment for smaller firms.
Spratt says the legislation will increase loan sizes to better meet businesses’ needs. It also includes incentives to encourage local banks to lend to small businesses and reduces bureaucratic red tape, making it easier for entrepreneurs to secure credit. The bill creates a new public/private partnership to expand investments in small business startups, considered an important source of job creation. It also extends critical Recovery Act provisions eliminating fees on Small Business Administration loans. The Democrat says the legislation fosters a diverse mix of businesses, taking steps to promote veteran-owned, women-owned and rural businesses.