As you all know last month I testified before the Senate Small Business committee on behalf of the National Small Business Association and Small Business California. Testifying with me was Byron Kenard from the Center for Small Business and the Environment and Chris Lynch from the Pennsylvania Small Business Development Center.
As a result legislation has been introduced per the below email from Brian Rice in Senator Kerry's office.
What is particularly significant to Small Business California is the reference to On Bill Financing that Hank Ryan has been working on around the country. It is good to see our efforts paying off. We now have a bill in the House and the Senate to help small businesses in the energy arena.
I would also like to thank Kyle Kempf from the National Small Business Association for all his efforts in helping me with my testimony and efforts in getting small business recognized in Washington.
Small Business California
Senator Kerry and Senator Snowe introduced the attached legislation, and filed it as an amendment to the energy bill. Please take a look, we look forward to hearing what you think. Specifically, the bill does the
Small Business Energy Efficiency (Kerry/Snowe)
* Requires the Small Business Administration (SBA) to implement an energy efficiency program that was mandated in the 2005 Energy Policy Act.
* Establishes a program to increase energy efficiency through energy audits at Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs).
* Authorizes the Administrator to guarantee "on-bill financing"
agreements between businesses and electric utility companies, to cover a utility company's risk in entering into such an agreement.
* Creates a telecommuting through a pilot program at SBA. The SBA Administrator is authorized to establish a program that produces educational materials and performs outreach to small businesses on the benefits of telecommuting.
* Creates a priority status within the SBIR and STTR programs that ensures high priority be given to small business concerns participating in energy efficiency or renewable energy system research and development projects.
* Establishes loans for businesses seeking to transfer to renewable sources of energy.