Bill to help small businesses could be dead on arrival

Small business regulation reform hits a snag

It’s been a hackneyed term of phrase from lawmakers in Washington, DC – create a friendly environment for start ups and small business and the private sector and economy will grow. However, the bill, H.R. 1105: “Small Business Capital Access and Job Perseveration Act” that aims to “loosen excessive and unnecessary” regulations when it comes to private enterprise and business seems to be indefinitely stalled. 

The bill was introduced by Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Va.) last year in an attempt to quash private equity fund advisers from red-tape and costly Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requirements that ultimately seem to have ramifications on economic growth. Many are lamenting that the bill itself has been in limbo thanks to what they say is “political posturing.” The bill passed last month in the House, and has been referred to the Senate for more vetting and a vote. However, according to The Hill, the White House veto threat makes it likely that the Senate will not consider it either after the Christmas break. 

According to The Hill, just  before the final vote, the House rejected an amendment from Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) that would have required private equity firms with U.S. assets worth anywhere from $150 million to $1 billion to register with the SEC, but also would have required the SEC to create a simpler registration process. That measure was defeated.

The regulation has its genesis in the Title IV of the Dodd-Frank Act imposes more registration and reporting requirements to register with the SEC. As a result of Title IV’s registration requirements, advisers to private funds must maintain records and file reports with the SEC, which are made available to other regulators, including the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC).  Requiring all advisers to private funds to maintain records and file reports with the SEC does little to improve the SEC’s ability to meet its mission, while weighing it down with unnecessary tasks and stifling rather than promoting capital formation.

In short, critics of Dodd-Frank think the new regulations on private equity may be slowing the flow of capital to startups. According to smallbiztrends.com, opponents of the new bill like Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) say relaxing regulation, even on private equity firms, is a bad idea. 

 

For more news on business regulation, check out the following:

Former Siemens executives face more bribery charges

Dodd-Frank ruling causes concern among federal aides and officials

Apollo Global seeks more regulation for private equity insurers

Contributing Author

Alexis Harrison

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