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Monday, April 27, 2009

SBA Delays

Democrats and Republicans alike agree that small businesses, those with less than 500 employees, are the backbone of the American economy.

According to a fact sheet produced by the Small Business Association, the government agency designed to support and protect these businesses, small businesses represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms and pay nearly 45 percent of the total U.S. payroll.

Most important, with unemployment rates continuing to rise, the SBA estimates that small businesses have generated 60 to 80 percent of net new jobs annually over the last decade.

It is disappointing then that Obama’a SBA has implemented only two of the eight SBA related provisions included in the economic stimulus. MSNBC reports:
[A]gency officials told the Government Accountability Office (GAO) [meeting the deadlines] wasn’t possible because creating regulations for new programs like these is complicated and time-consuming. The GAO report also noted the SBA is hampered by lack of sufficient staff. …

In an April 15 letter to the GAO, [SBA Administrator Karen] Mills said SBA’s senior managers are working to implement the agency’s economic stimulus programs “with both urgency and appropriate care.”

“The need to act with speed is being balanced with the need to assure that significant risks to the agency that might arise through Recovery Act projects are systematically and effectively identified, evaluated and addressed where appropriate,” Mills wrote.

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