House Small Business Committee

GOP Chairman: Small Business Needs to Have a Voice in Tax Reform

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/27/2017 - 12:00am

By: Naomi Jagoda
July 25, 2017

House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) said that it’s important for tax-reform discussions to consider how small-businesses operate.

“I believe that it is imperative for small businesses to have a seat at the table and a voice in the largest tax reform effort in 31 years,” Chabot said in a statement Tuesday.

In a letter dated Monday, Chabot outlined various small business-related issues that should be considered in tax-reform conversations. The letter was addressed to Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee’s tax-policy committee, and follows a hearing Roskam's panel held earlier this month on tax reform and small businesses.

“As the House Ways and Means Committee continues to discuss tax reform, I know you will keep small businesses at the forefront of the conversation, because when small businesses are growing and expanding, so does the economy,” Chabot wrote.

Chabot said that tax-reform discussions should recognize that small businesses might not break even or turn a profit until they have been operating for a number of years.

“The treatment of net operating losses in the tax code presents problems for young small businesses,” he wrote. “Any tax reform discussion should be mindful of how a small business, that may take years to grow and expand, might be impacted by the treatment of business losses.”

Chabot also said that the current complexity of the tax rules on deducting business investments prevents small businesses from expanding.

In tax-reform discussions, “certainty and clarity should be front and center as talks surrounding depreciation are considered,” Chabot wrote.

The Small Business Committee chairman added that tax-reform discussions need to involve looking at “pass-through” businesses whose income is taxed through the individual code. Chabot said that the “overwhelming majority” of businesses are pass-throughs.

The tax plans from the White House and House Republicans both call for lowering the top tax rate for pass-through businesses. But policymakers also have to figure out how to prevent wealthy individuals from exploiting that lower rate to avoid taxes.

White House National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn said last month that the “toughest issues” policymakers are dealing with on tax reform concern pass-throughs.

Read the original article HERE.

Chairman Chabot Commends EPA on Decision to Withdraw WOTUS Rule

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/27/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) released the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Army Corps of Engineers moved forward on a two-step process to repeal the “Waters of the United States" (WOTUS) Rule this week:

“One of our main focuses here at the Committee is to reduce unnecessary and often harmful government rules on small businesses. The WOTUS Rule, in particular, has been terrible for our nation’s small businesses. The rule has nothing to do with keeping water clean, but is more about expanding the federal government’s power. The EPA’s move this week is a great step in the right direction of making sure one less regulation hurts our small businesses and economy,” said Chairman Chabot.

The House Small Business Committee has held several hearings and sent multiple letters to the previous Administration about the WOTUS Rule. 

For more information, the Committee has put together a Regulatory Watch page to track regulatory proposals affecting small businesses that have been published in the Federal Register and are open for public comment. 

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Protecting Small Businesses from Cyber Attacks: the Cybersecurity Insurance Option

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/26/2017 - 11:00am

The Committee on Small Business will meet for a hearing titled, “Protecting Small Businesses from Cyber Attacks: the Cybersecurity Insurance Option.” The hearing is scheduled to begin at 11:00 A.M. on Wednesday, July 26, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

Attachments

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witnesses 

Mr. Robert Luft
President
SureFire Innovations
Cincinnati, Ohio

Ms. Erica Davis
Senior Vice President, Head of Specialty Products Errors & Omissions
Zurich Insurance, North America
Washington, DC
*Testifying on behalf of the American Insurance Association

Mr. Eric Cernak
Vice President, Cyber Risk Practice Leader
Munich Re U.S.
Hartford, CT
*Testifying on behalf of the Reinsurance Association America (RAA)

Mr. Daimon Geopfert
National Leader and Principal, Security and Privacy Consulting
Risk Advisory Services
Southfield, MI 



Chairman Chabot Applauds the Department of Labor Taking First Steps to Address Harmful Overtime Rule

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/26/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – This week, the Department of Labor invited stakeholders to submit public comments on the overtime rule. The rule, put in place by the Department of Labor during the Obama Administration in May 2016, was delayed by a federal judge in December 2016. The public will have 60 days to comment whether the rule will have an adverse effect on low-wage regions and industries. 

House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) released the following statement following this news:

“This week the Department of Labor is taking the first step in addressing this harmful rule. For several years the Committee has been very vocal about how the overtime rule will lead to job losses, lower wages and reduced benefits for millions of workers.  We look forward to continuing to work with the Administration to give small businesses relief from burdensome rules,” Said Chairman Chabot.

The Committee has held numerous hearings, roundtables, and sent letters highlighting the damage this rule will cause to small businesses and their employees.

For more information, the Committee has put together a Regulatory Watch page to track regulatory proposals affecting small businesses that have been published in the Federal Register and are open for public comment. 

 

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Do Small Businesses Need Insurance for Cyber Attacks?

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/26/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the House Committee on Small Business heard from a panel of experts on how cybersecurity insurance solutions can help small businesses recover from a cyber attack. They also took a closer look at the challenges small businesses may face in selecting a cybersecurity insurance policy and how insurers can make it a more affordable option for small companies trying to grow and protect themselves. 

“One case in particular that stands out is the story of a small business owner who testified before this Committee last year. He owned an indoor go-carting facility in Maine and had a number of employees and families that depended on him. He told the Committee how he was struck by a phishing scam—he logged onto his bank account and to his utter disbelief, his balance was zero. This happened on a payday no less,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

“In our Committee’s efforts to spotlight these serious and growing threats, it has become clear that need to think outside of the box as we work to thwart cyber attacks,” added Chairman Chabot.

“The statistics show that there is a sufficient amount of work to be done on part of small companies and their operational strategies. Sixty-five percent of small businesses reported that they do not strictly enforce their password policy; this is the largest gateway for potential breaches. It is imperative that we, as small business owners, fully enforce the most intrusive method of sabotaging our networks, and therefore our business,” said Robert Luft, President, SureFire Innovations in Cincinnati, OH.

 “The role of insurance is continuously increasing as customers are now seeking industry feedback and risk insights. It has become more of a partnership, with businesses focusing on not just what happens post-breach and a loss being paid. They value having a stable of pre-vetted vendors available to them if they are impacted by a data or security event. They are also focusing more on pre-breach services to guide them through risk mitigation tools like technology assessments,” said Erica Davis, Senior Vice President, Head of Specialty Products Errors & Omissions of Zurich Insurance in Washington, D.C.

“The number one reason [that small businesses did not purchase cyber insurance] given was that they claimed they did not need it. The second was the expense of coverage, and the third was that the process was too complicated and confusing. These results suggest that education is key to increasing the take-up rate of cyber insurance by small businesses, particularly given that 86% of the respondents stated that they store Personally Identifying or Personal Health Information,” said Eric Cernak, Vice President of Cyber Risk Practice Leader of Munich Re U.S. in Hartford, CT.

You can view the full video of today’s hearing HERE and read the full witness testimony HERE.

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Chairman Chabot: Tax Reform is Critical for Small Businesses

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 07/25/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON –This week, House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot sent a letter to Chairman Peter Roskam, Chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Tax Policy following their hearing titled, “How Tax Reform Will Help America’s Small Businesses Grow and Create New Jobs.”

“I believe that it is imperative for small businesses to have a seat at the table and a voice in the largest tax reform effort in 31 years. As the House Ways and Means Committee continues to discuss tax reform, I know you will keep small businesses at the forefront of the conversation, because when small businesses are growing and expanding, so does the economy,” said Chairman Steve Chabot.

Click HERE to read the full text of Chairman Chabot’s letter to Subcommittee Chairman Peter Roskam.

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House Passes Small Business Committee Bills to Increase Access to Capital

House Small Business Committee News - Mon, 07/24/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the House passed three bipartisan House Small Business Committee Member bills to increase access to capital and improve the lending environment for our nation’s small businesses. All three bills were introduced by Members of the House Committee on Small Business and will move to the Senate for consideration.

“Access to capital continues to be a major problem for small business owners who want to start or grow their company. These three bills are another way the Small Business Committee has been working to help our nation’s job creators. I appreciate all of the hard work our Members have put into these common-sense pieces of legislation,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

Below are the three bills passed by the House:

H.R. 2333, The Small Business Investment Opportunity Act, introduced by Contracting and Workforce Subcommittee Chairman Steve Knight (R-CA), to increase the individual leverage limit within the Small Business Investment Company program.

“Access to capital can be a serious barrier to growth for small businesses, and the SBIC program is an excellent way of making those funds available. This bill would expand the amount of capital available to the entrepreneurs in our community to help them grow their operations and hire more of our neighbors,” said Rep. Knight.

H.R. 2056, the Microloan Modernization Act, introduced by Contracting and Workforce Subcommittee Ranking Member Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), to update and modernize the Microloan program to ensure it is running efficiently and appropriately for small businesses.

“I’m proud of the bipartisan progress we are making together to help small businesses grow, including those in central Florida. My microloans bill will help more entrepreneurs and small businesses get the capital they need to start and grow, especially women and minorities. As Ranking Member of the Contracting & Workforce Subcommittee, I’ll keep working in a bipartisan way to support our small businesses, create jobs, and strengthen our economy for all,” said Rep. Murphy.

H.R. 2364, The Investing in Main Street Act, introduced by House Small Business Committee Member Judy Chu (D-CA,) to increase the amount that financial institutions may invest in small business investment companies (SBICs).

“I’m so pleased that both Democrats and Republicans on our committee could come together today to help advance this important bill that will increase investment in our small businesses. Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, but I know, from talking to entrepreneurs in my district and around the country, that one of the greatest challenges to success is access to capital. That is what this bill will address, by letting banks or federal savings associations invest up to 15% of their holdings into SBICs,” said Rep. Chu.

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21st Century Medicine: How Telehealth Can Help Rural Communities

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/20/2017 - 10:00am

The Committee on Small Business Subcommittees on Agriculture, Energy, and Trade and Health and Technology will meet for a joint hearing titled, “21st Century Medicine: How Telehealth Can Help Rural Communities.” The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10:00 A.M. on Thursday, July 20, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.  

The hearing will focus on the current utilization of telehealth services and how expansion of telehealth services could benefit small businesses and rural communities.

Attachments
1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witnesses
Ms. A. Nicole Clowers
Managing Director
Health Care Team
United States Government Accountability Office
Washington, DC
Testimony
Disclosure

Ms. Barb Johnston
Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder
HealthLinkNow
Sacramento, CA
Testimony
Disclosure

Mr. Michael Adcock
Administrator
Center for Telehealth
University of Mississippi Medical Center
Jackson, MS
Testimony
Disclosure




No Place Too Far for Telemedicine

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/20/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, Members of the House Small Business Subcommittees on Agriculture, Energy and Trade and Health and Technology heard from leading pioneers in the telehealth industry. They discussed the current use of telehealth services and how expansion can benefit small businesses and rural communities.

While twenty percent of Americans live in rural areas, only nine percent of physicians practice there,” said Agriculture, Energy, and Trade Subcommittee Chairman Rod Blum (R-IA). “Telehealth may allow rural physicians to expand their patient base and to keep dollars in the community, benefiting other local small businesses such as retail establishments and restaurants, contributing to the sense of ‘community’ that American small towns pride themselves on.”

“If medical treatment is unavailable on the Samoan Islands, patients, including many VA beneficiaries, generally have to fly nearly 3,000 miles to Hawaii to see a specialist,” said Health and Technology Subcommittee Chairwoman Amata Radewagen (R-AS). “One way to alleviate these physician shortages would be to incorporate the use of telehealth and remote patient monitoring into the offices of physicians and other health care professionals.”

A. Nicole Clowers, Managing Director for Health Care with the United States Government Accountability Office said, “For certain individuals, such as those who live in remote areas or who cannot easily travel long distances, access to health care services can be challenging. Telehealth can provide an alternative to health care provided in person at a physician’s office by providing clinical care remotely through two-way video for services such as psychotherapy or the evaluation and management of conditions.”

“To maintain and improve the economic vitality of rural America it is essential that rural people are kept healthy and that rural communities are supported by a full range of medical services, delivered both in person, and increasingly, by telemedicine,” said Barb Johnston, CEO of HealthLinkNow in Sacramento, California. “Telemedicine has demonstrated its effectiveness over the past 50 years and already benefits rural America by encouraging the recruitment and retention of local physicians and other healthcare providers who can be supported by telemedicine providers.”

“The TelEmergency program has grown to serve more than 20 hospitals and continues to produce outcomes on par with that of our Level 1 trauma center,” said Michael P. Adcock, Executive Director for the Center for Telehealth at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi. Mississippi officials “extrapolated this data to show the potential savings of over $180 million per year if 20 percent of the diabetics on Mississippi Medicaid participated in this program.” 

You can view full video of today’s hearing HERE and full witness testimony HERE.

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Reversing the Entrepreneurship Decline

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/19/2017 - 2:00pm

The Committee on Small Business will meet for a hearing titled, “Reversing the Entrepreneurship Decline.” The hearing is scheduled to begin at 11:00 A.M. on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

The hearing will provide the Committee with an opportunity to understand the entrepreneurship trends, challenges, and opportunities that exist in the United States. This hearing will also examine how entrepreneurship influences leading economic indicators and potential solutions to promote new and existing small businesses

Attachments

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witnesses

Mr. Larry Kudlow
Senior Contributor
CNBC
Fairfield, CT
Testimony 
Disclosure

Gregory Crawford, Ph.D.
President
Miami University
Oxford, Ohio
Testimony 
Disclosure

Ms. Karen Kerrigan
President & CEO
Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council
Vienna, VA
Testimony 
Disclosure

Mr. Joe Schocken
CEO
Broadmark Capital
Seattle, WA 
Testimony 
Disclosure



Key Lawmakers Move to Improve HUBZone Program

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/19/2017 - 12:00am

Washington, DC Bipartisan leadership of the House Small Business Committee today unveiled legislation to improve and reform the Historically Underutilized Business Zone Program (HUBZone), a procurement initiative that provides federal assistance to firms in economically distressed areas.  Created in 1998, the HUBZone helps small companies in these areas to do business with the federal government.  The program is overseen by the Small Business Administration (SBA).

H.R. 3294, the HUBZONE Unification and Business Stability Act (HUBS), was introduced by Ranking Member Velázquez (D-NY), and co-sponsored by Chairman Chabot (R-OH). H.R. 3294 would make important reforms to the HUBZone program, ensuring the initiative functions more efficiently and effectively, creating greater opportunity in areas that face significant economic hurdles. 

“This HUBZone reform packages includes new performance metrics,” said Chairman Chabot. “By collecting data, the SBA and Congress will better be able to determine how well the program is working and what needs to be changed. Also, accelerating the application process will allow small businesses interested in the program to get a quicker response from the SBA, meaning instead of waiting for a response, they can spend their valuable time and resources on growing their businesses.”

“The HUBZone program recognizes the benefits that federal contracts have for local communities that are often struggling to create and retain well-paying jobs,” said Ranking Member Velázquez. “After carefully studying and listening to small businesses on the ground, I’m confident the reforms we are proposing will strengthen the HUBZone initiative and, ultimately, mean greater economic opportunity for those living in economically distressed regions.”

Other reforms this bill would make include:

  • The bill would establish a 5-year cycle for determining the geographic boundaries of HUBZones, creating greater certainty for companies operating in the program.
  • The bill would change the calculations by which certain geographic areas qualify for the program, potentially adding as many as 1,000 rural and non-urban counties, helping more businesses avail themselves of the HUBZone initiative’s benefits. 

These and other changes would be implemented beginning in 2020. 

“Ultimately, we are helping bring greater transparency and stability to the HUBZone program,” noted Velázquez. “When HUBZones operate as intended, it can be a powerful tool for stimulating commerce in parts of the country afflicted by economic hardship and this bill will make important strides toward that goal.  I thank Chairman Chabot for working with me on these proposals.” 

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How Can We Reverse the Entrepreneurship Decline?

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/19/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the House Small Business Committee heard from industry experts on the challenges facing entrepreneurs and how the success of our small businesses have a major effect on the strength of our economy.   

“New and small businesses create the majority of our nation’s jobs and spur innovation. However, since the Great Recession, there has been a significant decline in entrepreneurship, which may in part explain the slow economic growth experienced in America today,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

“Universities have an important role to play in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. We can be critical players as the testing ground for the next generation of innovators. This involves not only focusing on what happens in the classroom but also giving students the breadth of knowledge in entrepreneurial thinking and emerging technologies necessary to thrive in any career. That includes opportunities for invaluable real-world experience that will prepare them to create their own business or excel in one,” said Gregory Crawford, Ph.D., President of Miami University in Oxford Ohio.

“Federal agencies are currently undergoing a process where they are reviewing regulations to identify those that can be streamlined, updated or repealed if they are duplicative or outdated. This is a healthy and needed process, and it is very positive to see the SBA’s Office of Advocacy directly engaged through their development of an online platform for small business input, and hosting roundtables across the country to receive their direct input. Clearing regulatory underbrush and streamlining rules is a good for startups and the U.S. business environment,” said Ms. Karen Kerrigan, President and CEO of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council in Vienna, VA.

You can view the full video of today’s hearing HERE and read the full witness testimony HERE

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House Passes NDAA with Small Business Reforms

House Small Business Committee News - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON - Today, the House passed H.R. 2810, the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes small business contracting reforms and entrepreneurial development provisions introduced by the House Small Business Committee.

The NDAA included two House Small Business Committee bills, H.R. 1773, the Clarity for America’s Small Contractors Act of 2017, introduced by Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) and H.R. 1774, the Developing the Next Generation of Small Business Act of 2017, introduced by Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY).

“Small businesses play a critical role in our nation’s defense, whether creating the latest technology, saving taxpayer dollars by providing less costly contracting, or hiring workers who create parts. I’m proud of the bipartisan work this Committee puts forth for small businesses and would like to thank Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY) and all the other Members who introduced provisions that were included in this year’s NDAA,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

“The NDAA bill contains a package of bipartisan, small business legislative proposals that will help small firms win their share of federal contracts, strengthen entrepreneurial development programs and assist cutting edge firms as they bring new technologies and products to market. I was pleased to work with Chairman Chabot in getting these measures across the finish line and into the NDAA and will continue pushing for their enactment,” said Ranking Member Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY).

Versions of the following bills were included in the NDAA:

  • H.R. 1597, the Commercial Market Representatives Clarification Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. David Brat (R-VA), co-sponsored by Rep. Steve Knight (R-CA) and Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL)
  • H.R. 1640, the Unifying Small Business Terminology Act of 2017, sponsored by Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY)
  • H.R. 1693, the Improving Contract Procurement for Small Businesses through More Accurate Reporting Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY), co-sponsored by Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  • H.R. 1702, the Small Business Development Centers Improvements Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Dwight Evans (D-PA), co-sponsored by Rep. Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R-AS) and Rep. Rod Blum (R-IA)
  • H.R. 1680, the Women’s Business Centers Improvements Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Steve Knight (R-CA), co-sponsored by Rep. Al Lawson (D-FL)
  • H.R. 1700, the SCORE for Small Business Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC), co-sponsored by Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE)

 

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The Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act: State of Small Business Contracting

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 10:00am

The Subcommittees on Contracting and Workforce and Economic Growth, Tax, and Capital Access will meet for a joint hearing titled, “The Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act:  State of Small Business Contracting.” The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10:00 A.M. on Thursday, July 13, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.  

Attachments

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witnesses

Mr. William Shear
Director
Financial Markets and Community Investment
United States Government Accountability Office
Washington, DC

Mr. Robb N. Wong
Associate Administrator
Office of Government Contracting and Business Development
United States Small Business Administration
Washington, DC 

Chairman Chabot: Tax Reform Critical for Small Businesses

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, Chairman Chabot applauded the Ways and Means Committee for holding a hearing to examine how tax reform will help small businesses grow and create new jobs.

“As Chairman of the House Small Business Committee, I regularly hear from small businesses across the country about their constant struggle with trying to comply with our nation’s tax laws. They’re confusing. They’re complicated. And they’re costly,” said Chairman Chabot (R-OH).

The House Small Business Committee has made tax reform a priority, holding several hearings on the matter including how the tax code is a barrier to entrepreneurship, small business owners not being able to participate in cafeteria plans, and ensuring that the IRS effectively protects small businesses from scams.

“Our complicated tax system prevents small businesses from expanding and creating new American jobs. If we want to keep our economy strong, we must put small businesses first by reforming the tax code. Today’s hearing was another great step in the right direction. The Small Business Committee will continue to put this issue front and center,” Chairman Chabot concluded. 

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PROMESA: State of Small Business Contracting

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, Members of the House Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce and Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax, and Capital Access heard from officials from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the Small Business Administration (SBA) regarding small business federal contracting provisions in the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA). Witnesses discussed trends in the SBA’s contracting programs found in a recent GAO report.

“According to SBA’s size standards, ninety-nine percent of all businesses on the island are considered small, but only a limited number of these firms are actually engaged in federal contracting activities,” said Subcommittee Chairman Knight (R-CA). “The island itself is dominated by small businesses and thus presents an excellent case study examining the efficacy of SBA’s federal contracting programs on the small business community.”

“As the Chairman noted, the vast majority of businesses in Puerto Rico are considered small, but not many of these firms actually operate in the federal contracting space,” Subcommittee Chairman Brat (R-VA) said. “Having a strong, healthy, and diversified small business base is critical to Puerto Rico’s economic stability and financial independence.”

William B. Shear, Director of Financial Markets and Community Investment at the GAO said, “Stakeholders GAO interviewed identified several challenges small businesses in Puerto Rico may face in obtaining federal contracting opportunities. Challenges they identified included a lack of knowledge about the federal contracting process; difficulty meeting procurement requirements; and difficulty accessing bonding, financing, and capital.”

“The staff of Office of Government Contracting and Business Development continues to improve the implementation of the SBA’s federal government contracting programs through improved application and certifications processes,” said Robb Wong, Associate Administrator for the Office of Government Contracting and Business Development at the SBA. “SBA provides assistance to firms at all phases of the procurement process. Our District Office in Puerto Rico conducts small business outreach activities throughout the island including training and seminaries to promote participation in the SBA’s small business programs.  ”

You can view full video of today’s hearing HERE and full witness testimony HERE.

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Help or Hindrance? A Review of SBA’s Office of the Chief Information Officer

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 11:00am

The Committee on Small Business will meet for a hearing titled, “Help or Hindrance? A Review of SBA’s Office of the Chief Information Officer.” The hearing will take place at 11:00 A.M. on Wednesday, July 12, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

The Committee will examine the Small Business Administration’s Office of the Chief Information Officer and whether it is operating efficiently and effectively.

Attachments

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witness

Ms. Maria Roat
Chief Information Officer
United States Small Business Administration
Washington, DC


Chairman Chabot Applauds E&W Hearing on Expanded Joint Employer Standard

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON - Today, the Education and the Workforce Committee held a hearing to examine how small businesses have been negatively affected by the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) expanded joint employer standard put into place during the Obama Administration.

“For over two years, small businesses have been telling us that the Obama-era changes to joint employer standard were bad news, now we have even more proof. The rule has harmed the small business owner’s ability to hire more workers, or even to open a new business in the first place,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

The House Committee on Small Business has been active on this issue since it arose in 2015. The Committee held a roundtable in April 2015 and then in March 2016 held a hearing on the issue entitled, “Risky Business: Effects of new Joint Employer Standards for Small Firms” to examine how the expanded rule impacted small businesses. The Committee found that the new standard led many large companies to either assert more control over small businesses they contract with or end business relationships entirely.

“Today’s Education and the Workforce hearing builds on the groundwork our Committee laid over the past two years and it is good to know that House Republican Leadership is continuing to fight unnecessary and burdensome regulations at every turn,” Chairman Chabot added.

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Small Business Committee Pleased with Progress at SBA’s Office of Chief Information Officer

House Small Business Committee News - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the House Small Business Committee held a hearing to examine whether the Small Business Administration’s (SBA’s) Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) is running efficiently and effectively.

Over the years, SBA’s Office of the Chief Information Officer has struggled to fulfill its most important functions, including to conduct effective oversight over the agency’s IT investments and IT security. Government watchdogs have issued numerous reports outlining the OCIO’s many failures and flaws. 

“Unfortunately, the Office of the Chief Information Officer has struggled over the past several years.  It has experienced high turnover at the Chief Information Officer position—SBA is on its eighth CIO since 2005,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

“Under new leadership, the Committee is pleased to learn how the current CIO, Ms. Roat, is working to improve the Office of the Chief Information Officer and better fulfill SBA’s important mission. From what the Committee has seen and heard so far, Ms. Roat is trying to strengthen the leadership and voice of her office,” added Chairman Chabot.

Maria Roat, Chief Information Officer at the U.S. Small Business Administration said this during the hearing, “It is necessary to pivot OCIO from a reactive, fire-fighting, technical support operation to a more proactive services organization that is innovative and responsive to the business and technology needs of SBA’s mission. After I arrived, the OCIO began moving aggressively to address its network, systems, and applications and overall operational challenges, move its primary data center to the cloud, address security deficiencies and decrease its personnel vacancy rate.”

You can view the full video of today’s hearing HERE and read the full witness testimony HERE.

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Small Business Committee Requests a Briefing about Recent CFPB Rulemaking Actions

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 07/11/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) sent a letter yesterday to the Honorable Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), requesting a briefing on the CFPB’s recent rulemaking actions.

“Small business owners frequently raise concerns to the Committee about the challenges of access to capital and how it prohibits job creation and business expansion. As Congress looks for ways to create an environment for small businesses to flourish, the Committee is wary of increased reporting requirements and onerous regulations, which acutely impact small businesses,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

In light of concerns that CFPB’s actions may be harming small businesses, the Committee is seeking details about CFPB’s request for information regarding Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act as well as the manner in which CFPB conducted certain Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) panels.

The full text of the letter can be found HERE.

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