Joyce proposes bipartisan bill to increase investment in rural communities

US Representative Dave Joyce (R-OH) sponsored a bipartisan bill on October 8 to incentivize capital investment in rural American communities.

“Small businesses are the lifeline of Buckeye’s economy, employing more than 2.2 million Ohioans,” said Representative Joyce. “Unfortunately, small businesses located in rural areas of our state face unique challenges in accessing capital. It is essential that we do all we can to ensure that these companies are not left behind as we work to recover from the pandemic. “

The Rural Capital Access Act, HR 5521, which Representative Joyce introduced with the original Cosponsor, U.S. Representative Jared Golden (D-ME), would increase the ability of Small Business Investment Companies (SBICs) to invest. in rural small businesses and would improve participation in the Rural Business Investment Corporation (RBIC) program.

“My bill will help improve access to investment capital for rural businesses, ensuring that every main street can provide new businesses with growth opportunities, no matter where they are located,” the said. representative Joyce.

Specifically, HR 5521 would allow SBICs to receive an additional $ 25 million per fiscal year in federally guaranteed leverage, ensuring that they are able to incur SBA-backed debt up to $ 200 million. as long as that extra debt is used to invest in rural businesses, according to an invoice summary provided by Rep staff. Joyce.

In addition, the measure would improve participation in the RBIC program by allowing the SBA, in consultation with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), to provide RBICs with access to unused leverage supported by the federal government and authorized for SBICs; establish an interagency working group between SBA, USDA and industry stakeholders to improve coordination in the administration of SBIC and RBIC programs; and develop recommendations to further improve access to capital and investment in rural areas through these programs, the summary said.

HR 5521 is the US House version of the identical bill, S. 1058, sponsored in March by US Senators John Thune (R-SD), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Deb Fischer (R-NE) in the Senate. .

The bill is supported by the Small Business Investor Alliance.

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