Small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities and economy. There are over 24 million small businesses in the U.S., and they represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms, employ half of all private sector employees, pay 45 percent of total U.S. private payroll, and have generated 60 to 80 percent of net new jobs annually over the last decade. Small businesses have also been a source of tremendous innovation, and are employing of 41 percent of the high-tech workforce.
Congresswoman Lowey is committed to improving the competitive position of small businesses by increasing their access to affordable capital and technical assistance, opening the federal contracting system, and reducing paperwork burdens.
Tax Relief for Small Businesses
Lowey supported substantial tax cuts enacted in 2007 to provide $7.1 billion over five years in tax cuts for small businesses, including an extension of the "expensing" benefit allowing the deduction of outlays for machines and equipment. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), which allows employers to receive a tax credit for hiring employees from specific groups such as veterans and high-risk youth, was also extended.
To help ease the burden placed on our small businesses, Lowey voted for the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, creating an interagency task force focused on streamlining and consolidating small business paperwork requirements. Now, small business owners have greater access to agency officials to help them navigate and reduce the paperwork they must complete, allowing them to focus on running their business.
Small Business Loan Programs
Currently, the number one method for financing a business is credit cards, which usually carry very high interest rates. That is why Small Business Administration (SBA) loans, including the 7(a) program, are vital for small businesses. Lowey has supported full restoration of Bush Administration cuts to SBA to preserve critical loan programs like the 7(a) loan program, 504 loan program, and the MicroLoan program are available to support small businesses.
Federal Contracting for Small Businesses
The $410 billion federal marketplace remains largely closed to small businesses. Lowey has supported legislation leveling the playing field, including H.R. 3867, the Small Business Contracting Program Improvements Act. By removing the hurdles that prevent small businesses from fairly competing for federal contracts, this legislation would finally allow America's small businesses to deliver to the Federal Government the low cost and innovative products and services that make them so successful in the private sector.