Small Business Jobs Act passes 61-38; will also help businesses export
(Washington, DC) - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen today announced passage of the Small Business Jobs Act, which will help New Hampshire small businesses expand and create jobs. The bill will help small businesses access credit, provide them with tax credits, and enhance their ability to export. Shaheen, a member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, helped craft the bipartisan legislation, which will now be sent to the House.
"While we have seen some signs that our economy is beginning to recover in New Hampshire, we need to create more jobs to fully emerge from this recession. Those jobs will come from the small businesses that are the cornerstone of our state's economy," said Shaheen. "Small businesses in New Hampshire have told me that the lending opportunities, tax credits, and export assistance in this legislation will give them the support they need to grow."
In the wake of the economic crisis, many small businesses in New Hampshire have had a difficult time getting the loans they need to grow their businesses, or even keep them afloat. This bill will help provide community banks the resources they need to provide loans to creditworthy small businesses. To accomplish this goal, the legislation includes:
- A $30 billion small business lending pool, which President Obama proposed in Nashua earlier this year, to provide small businesses with the capital they need to keep their doors open and expand their businesses;
- A $1.5 billion fund for existing state capital access programs, which have proven successful in extending credit to small businesses that need it most.
- Enhancements to existing Small Business Administration (SBA) loan programs that will help more small businesses access credit and refinance their debt;
The legislation also includes a Shaheen-sponsored measure to strengthen the SBA's Express Loan program by raising the loan limit from $350,000 to $1 million. Many New Hampshire banks and small businesses use the Express Loan program because it cuts red tape and quickly provides working capital to small businesses.
Overall, the bill is estimated to leverage over $300 billion in lending to Main Street businesses across the country while not adding to the deficit.
The legislation also provides over $12 billion in targeted tax relief for small businesses, which will help free up capital for small firms to make investments and hire workers.
Finally, the bill helps small businesses sell their goods and services overseas by strengthening the SBA's and the Department of Commerce's export assistance programs.
"It is business, not government, that creates jobs and drives new ideas and innovation, but government has a vital role to play in creating an environment for businesses to thrive," added Shaheen. "Small businesses across New Hampshire and the country have asked us to take action on their behalf, and today we accomplished that important goal."