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Congress to debate bills aimed at boosting small business capital, credit availability

Mar 02, 2012 Phil Burgess

The U.S. Senate is pushing a series of bills that aim to reduce the regulatory burdens on small businesses and entrepreneurs while also increasing the availability of capital to them. The proposals essentially rework a number of federal securities regulations, one of which placed a ban on general solicitation, thereby barring privately held companies from advertising securities sales to accredited investors, Reuters reports. One of the proposed bills would eliminate this rule. Other measures involve the tempering of crowdfunding networks, which are currently limited private donations. If the bill were to be passed, companies could raise up to $2 million annually from investors putting up no more than $10,000, or 10 percent of their annual income. Analysts hope the measure will help broaden credit decisions for startups and entrepreneurs. "Access to capital continues to be a major struggle for small businesses and entrepreneurs. It is a no-brainer for the Senate to move forward with this package of capital formation bills," said Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. "I believe we are on track for getting the package of capital formation bills through the chamber."