President Obama’s Small Business & Commerce Consolidation

February 10, 2012 at 7:11 pm 1 comment

The White House launched a new website in recent weeks, consolidating information on various programs and resources into one site for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Perhaps this is part of the President’s recently announced  plan to merge the Small Business Administration with the Commerce Department and four trade agencies into “one department, with one Web site, one phone number, one mission: helping American businesses succeed.”  The new consolidated department would be based on four pillars: small business & economic development, trade, technology & innovation, and statistics.

The plan has received mixed reviews. Small business advocates seem torn—on the one hand they feel the new streamlined approach will create a “one-stop-shop” for America’s small businesses and make accessing information and assistance much easier. On the other hand, advocates feel that the reorganization may minimize the emphasis placed on small businesses by the federal government, which could lead to an even greater imbalance toward promoting the interests of larger businesses over those of smaller businesses.

However, outside-the-box thinking is what we need to get the American economy back on track. Of course, special care should be taken to ensure that small businesses do not get lost in the shuffle. The proposed 2012 SBA budget includes $3.8 million in subsidies to support $25 million directed in Microloans to small businesses; the remainder of the $27 billion budget for capital support will be targeted at loans to community development, financing for specialized start-ups, and loans to support innovation and high-growth firms. The President’s plan could be an opportunity for more funding to be allocated for small businesses, especially considering there are roughly 23 million self-employed small businesses across America.

A stronger agency that will allow business to find assistance and resources in one central location, rather than having to go from department to department, will help businesses and lenders alike. But for now, having all the information for small businesses in one place is a very helpful start.

-by Ed Timberlake, Small Business Lending Manager

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Entry filed under: Small Business. Tags: , .

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1 Comment

  • […] SBA’s budget, allowing for an increase in small business lending, and he has also proposed rolling the SBA into the Commerce Department along with four other trade agencies. This could be seen either as streamlining, or as diluting the […]


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