WASHINGTON – Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship Chair Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., today made the following comments after President Barack Obama released his budget proposal. Unlike the past two years, the President proposed to decrease funding slightly for the SBA. The request amounts to a 1 percent cut from what he requested last year, but almost a 20 percent increase above what was appropriated to the SBA in FY2010. Overall, the request was a step in the right direction after eight years of cuts in SBA programs in the previous administration, with critical funding for needed loan programs.
“The President has, again, submitted a budget for the Small Business Administration that allows the Agency to meet its mission, after years of being under-funded and unable to help small businesses. I agree we need to make cuts where reasonable, and I agree with the President’s goal to invest in programs where jobs are being created and where small businesses can reap the most benefits, like with small business loans where the private sector has pulled back,” said Senator Landrieu. “However, we can’t tighten the belt too much or our small business owners will not have access to the resources they need to keep their doors open or rebuild when disaster strikes, or to start and expand when they have a good idea. Programs like SCORE, WBCs and SBDCs are a lifeline that we must strengthen not weaken. I will continue to work at increasing funding to critical core services for America’s entrepreneurs while working to find reasonable ways to cut the fat without hurting our businesses. ”
The President’s proposed budget compared to the FY2010 funding:
- Requests critical funding of $211 million for the SBA’s largest loan programs to leverage through public private partnerships $27 billion in loan guarantees, without raising fees on the borrowers and lenders.
- Requests a slight increase for the Women’s Business Centers and Native American Outreach ($14 million and $1.25 million).
- Requests level funding for SCORE and Veterans Business Development ($7 million and $2.5 million).
- Requests a program level of $1.1 billion for disaster loans.
- Requests funding of $1 million to implement the Women’s Procurement Program.
- Requests funding cuts for the Small Business Development Centers, 7(j) Technical Assistance, Microloan Technical Assistance, and elimination of the PRIME program.