Petaluma, Calif. - Last week, President Obama announced his administration's plan for a, "New Small Business Lending Initiative." The new initiative is the next installment in a series of speeches by President Obama, which have yet to yield any results for the small business community.
In his speech President Obama stated, "This administration is going to stand behind small businesses. You are our highest priority because we are confident that when you are succeeding, America succeeds." (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/remarks-president-small-business-initiatives-landover-md) Over the past year, President Obama promised to restore the Small Business Administration's (SBA) budget, restore the SBA Administrator to a cabinet level position, implement the 5 percent set-aside goal for women owned firms, and stop the diversion of federal small business contracts to corporate giants. To date, none of these promises have been honored. (http://www.barackobama.com/2008/02/26/the_american_small_business_le.php)
Since the recession began, the government has spent roughly $2.8 trillion to stimulate our nation's economy. (http://money.cnn.com/news/storysupplement/economy/bailouttracker/) President Obama stated that stimulus spending has led to small businesses receiving $13 billion in new loans and $4.3 billion in federal contracts, for a total of $17.3 billion. That means small businesses have received only 0.6 percent out of the $2.8 trillion in stimulus funds invested by the government. In comparison, AIG received $180 billion in taxpayer money, while America's 27 million small businesses have received $17.3 billion.
Regarding the new initiative, Keith Girard in Allbusiness.com stated, "whether they [Obama Administration] will get desperately needed capital to small businesses in a meaningful way is problematic at best." (http://www.allbusiness.com/economy-economic-indicators/economic-conditions-depression/13271042-1.html) On the Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington stated, "if this were really a high-priority for the administration, it could, you know, actually do something about it. Right now. The executive branch has plenty of weapons at its disposal to force banks still dependent on billions of dollars in taxpayer funds and guarantees to change behavior." (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/barack-obama-is-doing-my_b_334631.html)
Last year President Obama stated that for every billion dollars spent, 40,000 new jobs would be created. (http://bit.ly/2eiyas) Based on the Obama Administration's estimates regarding job creation, stimulus spending to date should have created 640,000 jobs, however, a recent report has revealed that only 30,383 jobs have been created. (http://www.recovery.gov/Pages/home.aspx)
On August 18, President Obama announced a government-wide plan led by SBA Administrator Karen Mills and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke to increase contracting opportunities for small businesses. The plan included over 200 events nationwide within 90 days; over 70 days after the announcement no schedule of these events has been released. (http://www.sba.gov/idc/groups/public/documents/sba_homepage/news_release_09-58.pdf)