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Mr. PRYOR. Madam President, at this point I wish to thank my colleague from the State of Maine. She has been a great leader in small business matters. She and I serve on the Small Business Committee together, and we have been working for, I guess, 3 years now on the Regulatory Flexibility Act and other related efforts to try to make sure the proper environment exists in America for small businesses to thrive and for entrepreneurs to be successful.
This amendment would make certain that key provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, which require that Federal agencies fully consider during the rulemaking process the economic impact on small firms, would apply to the CFPB created in the bill offered by Senator Dodd. This amendment would ensure that the newly created CFPB, when it is promulgating its rules and regulations, fully consider the economic impact those rules and regs would impose on our Nation's almost 30 million small firms, which have created 64 percent of all the new jobs in this country over the last 15 years and, undoubtedly, will drive this Nation's economic recovery.
The last point I wish to make before I make a few closing comments is the fact that we, as the Senate and as the House, should be aware and should address the fact that onerous regulations can crush entrepreneurial spirit for America's small businesses. In 2009 alone--last year--during a recession, there were close to 70,000 pages added to the Federal Register of new regulations. The annual cost of complying with Federal regulations totals about $1.1 trillion.
I am not saying we should end all regulation. I think most of these--or at least a lot of these--make a lot of sense and there are good reasons for a lot of them. But we have to be careful and we have to understand the impact that these regulations have on small businesses. We want our small businesses to thrive. We want our small businesses to be successful. If we are not careful, an agency such as the CFPB--and there are many other Federal agencies--can create rules and relations that actually choke off business opportunities for entrepreneurs and for small businesses.
So I am proud to join my friend and colleague from Maine on this amendment, and I would encourage other colleagues to look at this amendment, look at the text of the amendment. I have enjoyed working with the Senator from Maine, over the last few years, when it comes to trying to help small businesses.
With that, I yield the floor.
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