Washington, D.C. – Two bipartisan bills, one of them led by U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-ID), chairman of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, today passed the Senate without objection and now heads to the President’s desk for signature. Risch’s bill, the Small Business 7(a) Lending Oversight Reform Act, and the Small Business Investment Opportunity Act, would ensure appropriate oversight of Small Business Administration (SBA) lending programs and improve access to capital for small business owners. Both pieces of legislation enjoy broad support among small business advocacy groups, program participants, and entrepreneurs. President Trump is expected to sign the bills into law in the coming weeks.
“Access to capital is one of the most significant hurdles that entrepreneurs face as they start and grow,” said Chairman Risch. “A number of programs at SBA provide funding to small businesses they wouldn’t be able to get otherwise. Our job in Congress is to make sure these programs are being operated effectively and with appropriate oversight. The Small Business 7(a) Lending Oversight Reform Act is an example of hard work in a bipartisan and bicameral way to ensure these objectives are met. I’m proud of the work we’ve done on this bill and look forward to hearing stories from small businesses who continue to benefit from the 7(a) program in the long term.”
The Small Business 7(a) Lending Oversight Reform Act, which passed the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship unanimously, preserves the important 7(a) loan program by increasing the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) oversight authority over the program. It will ensure the SBA has the tools it needs to oversee this growing program, provide lenders with needed clarity, and make sure entrepreneurs and small business owners have access to funds they would otherwise not be able to obtain. Click here to learn more about the bill.The Small Business Investment Opportunity Act modifies the SBA’s Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) program by increasing the amount of capital that SBICs can invest in qualifying small businesses. Under current law, the SBA can guarantee up to $150 million of an SBIC with a single investment fund. The Small Business Investment Opportunity Act increases that cap to $175 million. Click here to learn more about the bill.