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News & Observer - Price Criticizes Burr's Proposal to Fold SBA into Dept. of Commerce

August 12, 2011
In The News

By Rob Christensen

Democratic Congressman David Price has sharply criticized a proposal by Republican Sen. Richard Burr to fold the Small Business Administration into the Department of Commerce, calling it "an incredibly wrong-headed move" for the economy.

Burr has proposed merging the SBA and the Department of Labor into a newly created Department of Commerce and Workforce as one of several proposals he has made to streamline the federal government.

But Price said submerging the SBA into Commerce would hurt the program just as small businesses are trying to recover.

"Senator Burr's bill ending the Small Business Administration as we know it is an incredibly wrong-headed move for North Carolina families in this time of fragile recovery," Price said.

"Small businesses are our engines of job creation across North Carolina, and in our state the SBA's Small Business Innovation Research program has helped hundreds of businesses and created thousands of jobs."

A Burr spokesman said that SBA would be given an enhanced position in the proposed new agency, with equal footing to the departments of commerce and labor, and would also be in a better position to coordinate its programs with other federal agencies.

"More than two years into an administration that has burdened small businesses with every possible kind of job killing regulation," Burr said, "I am intrigued by Congressman Price's newfound interest in the issues facing America's job creators."

"However, it is apparent to me that he did not take the time to read my bill," Burr said.

Price compared the Burr effort to submerge SBA into commerce with efforts of the administration of President George W. Bush cut funding for the program in half and throw it out of the Cabinet.