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Wednesday, May 22, 2013
View from the Capitol: the passage of the Small Business Credit Availability ActPosted Friday, April 27, 2012, at 3:57 PM
This week, the U.S. House passed a bill I sponsored to help small and rural businesses obtain loans and create jobs. H.R. 3336, the Small Business Credit Availability Act, revises the Dodd-Frank Reform Act to provide smaller banks with relief from Dodd-Frank's regulations governing the banks' ability to offer low-rate fixed loans to small businesses. It also applies to credit unions, Farm Credit banks, the Rural Electric Cooperative infrastructure lender, and finance companies that offer credit to their customers.
This revision of Dodd-Frank is essential to farmers, manufacturers, and small and rural businesses wanting to expand and create new jobs. Many of these businesses are often overlooked by large national banks and might not have access to competitive loans. Although Dodd-Frank was supposed to reduce the power of big banks, it has actually had the exact opposite effect. My bill helps to reverse this trend and keep lending decisions closer to home. Small businesses in rural America should be able to access credit in local communities without the need to turn to national banks that are not familiar with the needs and concerns of this part of the country.
Dodd-Frank had many unintended consequences, including burdening small lenders with red tape and new costs. My bill exempts these small lenders from many of the provisions of Dodd-Frank that could put them out of business.
I am pleased my bill passed with by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 312-111. It now moves to the Senate where I hope it will be quickly passed and sent to President Obama for his signature.
On another matter, the U.S. House took action to prevent an increase in student loan rates without adding a cost to taxpayers. The legislation pays for the proposal by offsetting the cost with money from a slush fund that is part of the Obama health care law.
We find ourselves in this position now because of action taken by Congress in 2007. At that time the House temporarily scaled down interest rates on new subsidized loans to undergraduate students over four years from 6.8 percent to 3.4 percent. The temporary reduction is due to expire in July and new loans would revert back to the market rate of 6.8 percent.
With over 50 percent of college students unable to find jobs due to the failed economic policies coming out of Washington the last few years, college graduates are moving back home to live with their parents while looking for work. Due to the dire circumstances many grads find themselves in, I worked with leadership to find a solution to extend the lower rate for another year while we take proactive steps to turn around our economy. I'm glad we were able to find the money to do it.
I was pleased to work to help college students and will continue to focus on removing barriers to job creation to get our economy moving again. We need good paying jobs in America and we have job creators who want to grow, expand, and hire. We just need Washington to get out of the way, support entrepreneurship, reduce regulations and taxation, and allow the free enterprise system to flourish.
It is always a pleasure to hear from you and to listen to your views and concerns. I am honored to serve you.
Have a great week.
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Vicky Hartzler is the U.S. representative for Missouri's 4th Congressional District. She was raised on a farm in Archie, and lives with her husband, Lowell and daughter, Tiffany, on a working farm in Cass County. She is a graduate of both the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1983 and Central Missouri State University (now University of Central Missouri) in 1992, graduating summa cum laude with a B.S. in Education from MU and a M.S. in Education from Central Missouri. For more information, visit http://hartzler.house.gov.
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