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Washington
Udall takes Senate floor on MBLs
WASHINGTON (7/29/10)--Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) on Wednesday again promoted legislation that would lift the current 12.25% cap on credit union member business lending ahead of a potential Senate vote on small business legislation. Udall’s new amendment, which was reintroduced on procedural grounds, is identical to earlier legislation that proposed lifting the current MBL cap to 27.5% of total assets. Speaking before the Senate on Wednesday, Udall said that his legislation was a “small step” to help small businesses at no cost to taxpayers. Udall added that he would work with senators from both sides of the aisle in hopes of gaining support for his “sensible reforms.” The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has estimated that lifting the cap even to 25% of assets would inject about $10 billion in new funds into the economy and create more than 100,000 new jobs, at no cost to taxpayers. Udall during his remarks cited the effect that his legislation could have on currently tight credit markets, and estimated that lifting the cap could create $200 million in new small business funding in his state. The small business jobs bill may come up this week for a vote, though it is not known whether leading Senators can gather the votes needed to end debate. That legislation would provide small banks with $30 billion in funds to lend to small businesses. Udall, who supports the small business legislation, said that he did so with the understanding that if the Senate was “going to finance $30 billion to increase lending,” they would “at the very least” also move to “increase lending without costing taxpayers a dime.” Negotiations on which amendments could be potentially added to the small business legislation continued late yesterday, and the Senate will likely hold a vote on limiting debate and amendments later today. President Barack Obama on Wednesday urged the Senate to approve the jobs bill, which he said would cut taxes for small businesses and make more loans available. Obama this week encouraged members of Congress to approve the legislation before the House and Senate begin their respective summer recesses.
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