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Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic, Peters, Stabenow, Shaheen, Hassan Introduce Bill to Support Small Business Lending

Bill Reauthorizes Successful Lending Program to Help Support Small Businesses Hit Hard by Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senators Gary Peters (MI), Debbie Stabenow (MI), Jeanne Shaheen (NH) and Maggie Hassan (NH) today reintroduced legislation to support small business lending as the Coronavirus pandemic continues to negatively impact small businesses in Michigan and across the country. The Small Business Access to Capital Act will reauthorize and improve the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) which helps small businesses grow and create jobs. SSBCI funds the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and other state-led lending programs that leverage private financing to help small businesses access the capital they need.

“I’m hearing firsthand from small businesses in Michigan about just how devastating this pandemic is to them,” said Senator Peters. “Now more than ever, we need to do everything in our power to support small businesses because they are the backbone of our economy. I championed the State Small Business Credit Initiative because it is proven to work in Michigan and it will provide crucial support to small businesses as they look to get back on their feet following this pandemic. I’m pleased to introduce this bill, and I’ll be actively looking at ways to advance this as part of any legislative action to address the Coronavirus pandemic.”

“Our country is facing an unprecedented crisis that has threated the operations of our small businesses. Helping them access capital is an important way we can keep them running and their employees on the job. I’m grateful for Senator Peters’ long record of work on these issues that has helped hundreds of businesses and manufacturers. The Small Business Access to Credit Act is a critical step to strengthen our economy during the coronavirus outbreak,” said Senator Stabenow.

“Small businesses in New Hampshire are the backbone of our economy and the heart of our communities. They’re also on the frontlines of the economic fallout from this public health emergency,” said Shaheen. “As we navigate this crisis, ensuring small businesses have access to capital to endure the financial impact of this crisis is crucial. That’s why I’m reintroducing legislation to strengthen the State Small Business Credit Initiative so we can prioritize economic support for small businesses to hold steady during this challenging time.”

“New Hampshire small businesses need funds now to pay their employees, make rent, and continue operations as best as they can as the COVID-19 pandemic continues,” said Senator Hassan. “The State Small Business Credit Initiative has provided significant support to Granite State businesses in the past, and this much-needed bill will reauthorize the program and expand funding for it in order to provide greater support to hard-working small businesses owners in New Hampshire and across the country. I hope my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will join us in working to quickly pass this bill.”

“We are grateful to Senator Peters for introducing this important legislation at a unique time in our nation’s history. The Small Business Access to Capital Act will provide pivotal support to small business in our state which will minimize the economic impact of the COVID-19 virus. This legislation provides much needed access to capital for Michigan businesses. Michigan’s banks will remain strong long after the current crises subsides. It is important that Michigan’s businesses have the opportunity to do the same,” said Rann Paynter, President & CEO, Michigan Bankers Association.

“CDFA is grateful to Senators Peters, Shaheen, Stabenow and Hassan for their leadership on the State Small Business Credit Initiative,” said Toby Rittner, CDFA's President & CEO. “State development finance agencies are ready to immediately deploy capital to businesses in need through this innovative and proven program.”

Michigan is home to over 870,000 small businesses that employ nearly 50% of the workforce in the state. Michigan previously exhausted all SSBCI federal funding, expending over $100 million that leveraged a total investment of nearly $600 million, including private capital. This investment has helped businesses create or retain over 12,000 jobs across the state.

The Small Business Access to Capital Act – which Peters, Shaheen and Stabenow previously introduced in 2017 – builds on the initial program's success by providing an additional $1 billion in formula funds to all states based on the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 Peters championed as a member of the House of Representatives. Michigan would receive over $52 million in new formula funding: more than every state except Florida and California. The bill will also create a new, competitive $2 billion pool of funding for states that have already capitalized on funding from the 2010 program.