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Small Business Committee Approves Shaheen Bills Promoting Energy Efficiency, Encouraging Veteran Business Ownership

(Washington, DC) – Today, the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship approved legislation offered by U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), the lead Democrat on the committee, that would help small businesses reduce their energy costs by providing affordable financing for investments in energy efficient technologies. The committee also advanced Shaheen legislation that would encourage and assist veteran entrepreneurs. Progress on this legislation follows President Obama signing Senator Shaheen’s bipartisan Veterans Entrepreneurship Act into law yesterday, which would lower the cost of Small Business Administration (SBA) loan programs designed to assist veterans in starting and growing their small businesses.

The Small Business Energy Efficiency Act, authored by Shaheen, would expand the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 504 lending program to encourage loan support for small businesses looking to invest in energy efficiency improvements for their companies.

“Energy costs can be a significant challenge for small businesses as they try to grow and create jobs,” Shaheen said. “This legislation would help small businesses overcome that hurdle by providing access to financing for energy efficiency improvements. This will create jobs, save small businesses money and reduce pollution. We’ve seen that there is overwhelming bipartisan support for energy efficiency legislation in Congress and I am pleased that this legislation will now move on to the full Senate for consideration.”

The committee also approved Shaheen’s bipartisan Veterans Small Business Ownership Improvements Act, which includes a variety of program improvements at the SBA to help veterans to start and grow small businesses.

“This legislation is about making the federal government a better ally of our veterans as they transition from military service to local job-creators,” said Shaheen. “Many veterans are applying the same can-do approach they used in the military to their businesses and the bipartisan legislation we advanced today will connect them with resources that can help their business grow and succeed.” 

This legislation would authorize the Small Business Administration’s successful “Boots to Business” program, Women Veterans Business Training, Business Training for Service Disabled Veterans and Veterans Business Outreach Center programs.