Small businesses play an especially vital role in rural America, creating roughly two-thirds of jobs. However, entrepreneurs in these communities face different challenges than those in metropolitan areas.
Employers in rural areas have a harder time accessing important technology, transportation, and services. This can make competing with larger businesses in more urban areas much more difficult. Business owners in rural areas must also worry about issues like poor infrastructure that can prevent expansion; problems accessing affordable, reliable energy; the loss of skilled workers to higher paying jobs in metropolitan areas; and fewer opportunities to access capital.
Given their important contributions to rural communities, Congress must pay particular attention to helping these small business owners overcome their unique challenges. In 2009, then-Ranking Member Sam Graves joined Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Doc Hastings and Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Frank Lucas in co-chairing the Rural America Solutions Group. Together, they hold hearings and forums to examine important issues facing rural Americans. To read more about the Rural America Solutions Group, click here.