Letter on Small Business Lending Program
October 23, 2009
The Honorable Timothy F. Geithner
U.S. Department of the Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20220
The Honorable Karen G. Mills
U.S. Small Business Administration
409 3rd Street, SW
Washington, DC 20416
Dear Secretary Geithner and Administrator Mills:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world's largest business federation representing more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region, applauds your efforts to increase access to capital to small businesses that will encourage job growth and help revive the U.S. economy. Although credit markets have improved, additional steps are necessary to increase lending to small businesses in order for them to play the vital roll of job creation critical to jump-starting our economy.
The Chamber supports the use of the previously approved temporary Troubled Asset Relief Program funding in order to incentivize community banks and financial institutions to provide access to capital to small businesses. In order for it to be successful, the Chamber asks that you move forward with this program expeditiously and structure it in a way to be robust and with the least amount of government intervention in the operations of participating institutions that have been imposed by Congress.
Additionally, the Chamber has been a longstanding advocate of increasing Small Business Administration's 7(a) and 504 government guaranteed program loan sizes so that small business owners of all sizes can have adequate avenues of capital. Increasing the size of the loans that qualify for government guarantees would create incentives for financial institutions to lend to small businesses willing to invest in larger projects that may not otherwise be funded.
Ninety-six percent of the Chamber's members are small businesses with 100 employees or less. On behalf of these small businesses, the Chamber applauds your efforts to shore up lending for America's entrepreneurs and looks forward to working with the Administration and Congress on this effort.
R. Bruce Josten
Cc: Senators Landrieu and Snowe and Representatives Velázquez and Graves