David Kirkpatrick

October 16, 2009

Sanity from the Hill on small business

Hear, hear Mark Warner!

From the link:

The Obama administration should spend more money from the $700 billion bank rescue on programs to increase lending to small businesses, said Senator Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat on the banking committee.

Warner and other lawmakers are pushing regulators to consider ways to jumpstart credit to small companies, which he says is dwindling even after efforts to provide government support. The senator urged action at a meeting of the Senate Democratic Caucus yesterday.

Treasury Department officials said they are in discussions with Warner, Senator Mary Landrieu, a Democrat of Louisiana, and Republican Olympia Snowe from Maine, on how to address the issue, either through the Troubled Asset Relief Program or new legislation. A $15 billion program to purchase pools of small- business loans, announced in March, has attracted little interest even though it’s ready for use, an administration official said.

“The original notion of the TARP was, we were going to help Main Street by bailing out Wall Street,” Warner said in an interview. “We’ve seen Wall Street recover, but we have not seen Main Street reap the direct benefits.”