Small Business Common Application Background
Sen. Kay R. Hagan (D-NC) News Release
May 17, 2012 (Menafn - Congressional Documents and Publications/ContentWorks via COMTEX) --Whether it's applying for a grant, seeking technical assistance, or bidding on a contract, small businesses face a dizzying array of paperwork when interacting with the federal government. Different agencies will often ask for the same information from the same small businesses. Small business owners don't have the time or staff to navigate this intricate maze, and too frequently just avoid the hassle altogether, losing out on potentially significant business opportunities. According to a 2010 study from the SBA Office of Advocacy, it costs small businesses with less than 20 employees more than 10,500 per employee to comply with federal regulations. When compared to their larger counterparts, it costs small firms over 2,800 (or approximately 36%) more for each employee.
The Small Business Common Application Act of 2012 will reduce the resources that small business owners devote to applying for Federal assistance, and increase the Federal resources available to them by creating a common application that meets their needs. Modeled after the common application that allows college applicants to apply to multiple universities with the same application, the small business common application will allow small businesses to apply for all Federal assistance with a single form.
The bill charges the Small Business Administration (SBA) with establishing a small business common application and web portal within one year of enactment of the Act.
The bill charges the Economic Development Administration (EDA) in the Department of Commerce - an office with a history of success in coordinating disparate Federal agencies - with leading an interagency Task Force to make recommendations for how best to implement the common application government-wide.
The Task Force will consist of one senior officer appointed by each of:
*The Administrator of the GSA
*The Administrator of the SBA
*The Director of the NIH
*The Director of the NSF
*The Pres. of the Export-Import Bank
*The Secretary of Agriculture
*The Secretary of Defense
*The Secretary of Health & Human Services
*The Secretary of Labor
*The Secretary of State
*The Secretary of the Treasury
*The Secretary of Veterans Affairs
The Task Force will also hold a public meeting to receive comments from small business owners directly. It must report its recommendations within 6 months of enactment to the SBA and other Executive agencies, which will then have 30 days to submit to Congress any recommendations for statutory changes that will be necessary to carry out the common application.
Read this original document at: http://www.hagan.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=1797
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