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Rounds, Hirono Reintroduce Legislation to Promote Veteran Small Business Exports

WASHINGTON –U.S. Sens. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), members of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, reintroduced the Veterans Small Business Export Promotion Act. The bill would amend the Small Business Act to waive up-front guarantee fees for veterans and their spouses participating in the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) export promotion loan programs.


“Our legislation seeks to help South Dakota veterans looking to start or grow a small business when their service is up,” Senator Rounds said. “Small businesses are a major part of our state’s economy, in fact 99 percent of all businesses in South Dakota are small businesses. We’re also fortunate to be a state with a high population of veterans. Our bill would help veterans transition to civilian life while also promoting entrepreneurship. We are so thankful for the sacrifices made by our veterans, and want to do all we can to make sure they have a smooth transition and a good job when they return to civilian life.”


“Veteran-owned businesses are vital to Hawaii’s economy,” Senator Hirono said. “However, a number of our veterans, including those transitioning to civilian life, face barriers to accessing the capital needed to start and grow a business. Our legislation would provide long-term relief on SBA loans that support entrepreneurship and job creation. I look forward to continuing to work together to make opportunities like these available for our veterans.”


SBA has previously waived up-front guarantee fees for veterans applying for its Export Express, Export Working Capital and International Trade loan programs, which provide access to capital for veterans and their spouses so that they can start and grow their businesses, and expand into new markets abroad. The Veterans Small Business Export Promotion Act would make this policy permanent to provide certainty for those veterans.


The Veterans Small Business Export Promotion Act is also supported by the National Small Business Association and the Small Business Exporters Association.