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Statement of the Hon. Nydia M. Velázquez on Full Committee Markup

Washington, November 20, 2019

In today’s mark-up, we will be considering four bipartisan bills. Two of the bills will require SBA’s resource partners to provide counseling and training to individuals in prison and post-release. 

The other two bills will make meaningful improvements to contracting programs that support small businesses.

I would like to take a moment to thank the Ranking Member and all the members of the Committee for their bi-partisanship and commitment to small business.

It is no small feat that together we have worked to pass 23 bi-partisan bills that will make is easier for Americans to launch and grow their small business. And, all those bills have sailed through the House of Representatives with broad bipartisan support.  That’s a good track record – Thank you all!

That is part of the reason I am so pleased to lead this Committee. But the other part is that I have an opportunity to work on issues that can really make a difference in people’s lives.  Today, we have an opportunity to do just that with the two Prison to Proprietorship bills. We can also make it easier for small businesses to compete in the federal marketplace by leveling the playing field for small contractors on the verge of transitioning out of the small business definition and those hoping to build a history of past performance. 

With that, let’s turn to the bills under consideration.  As a result of hearings and outreach, the Committee today is considering 4 bills, which are:

·         H.R. 5078, the “Prison to Proprietorship Act,” introduced by myself and co-sponsored by Ranking Member Chabot;

·         H.R. 5065, the “Prison to Proprietorship for the Formerly Incarcerated Act,” introduced by Mr. Jeffries and co-sponsored by Mr. Burchett;

·         H.R. 5130, the “Capturing All Small Businesses Act of 2019,” introduced by Mr. Veasey and co-sponsored by Mr. Hern; and

·         H.R. 5146, the “Unlocking Opportunities for Small Business Act,” introduced by Mr. Hagedorn and co-sponsored by Mr. Evans.

I support each of the bills to be marked up today. 


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