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Robert Hurt: Small business access to capital

robert hurtAt a time when economic uncertainty and federal over-regulation are hindering job creation, it is critical that we look for bipartisan solutions to create jobs in our local communities and get our economy back on track.

As I travel through Virginia’s Fifth District, the negative effects of federal over-regulation and government mandates contained in the Dodd-Frank law can be clearly seen along our Main Streets and on our family farms.  That is why I recently introduced the Investment Advisers Modernization Act of 2016, along with Congressman Juan Vargas (D-California), Congressman Steve Stivers (R-Ohio), and Congressman Bill Foster (D-Illinois).  This bill would serve to rid the Investment Advisers Act (IAA) of outdated, duplicative, and burdensome regulations which impose an unnecessary hardship on our small business’ ability to access capital.  I was pleased to see this initiative pass out of the House Financial Services Committee with strong bipartisan support and I look forward to the bill’s consideration before the House of Representatives and continued advancement through the legislative process.

recent report by the American Investment Council cited Virginia as the 16th state in the country in terms of having the most companies receiving private equity investment, with 80 companies employing hundreds of Virginians in 2015.  These figures underscore the importance of legislative improvements such as the Investment Advisers Modernization Act, which ensures that access to capital is not hindered by unnecessary government rules and regulations.  One such Dodd-Frank mandate requires private investment funds to register with the SEC, including advisers to private equity funds, despite the fact that such firms pose no systemic risk to the financial system.  This burdensome requirement has forced firms to dedicate substantial time and resources to comply, hindering their ability to invest in small businesses across the country.  While this remains bad policy, our past efforts to repeal the registration regime have not come to fruition, and the Investment Advisers Modernization Act represents a new effort to minimize regulatory burdens that are stifling economic investment.

As we well know, small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and the ability for these entities to access private capital is imperative for their success and the success of our local and national economies.  In order for our economy to grow and for our small business owners to be able to create the jobs that we need, we must remove unnecessary regulations that tie up private capital and create economic uncertainty, and put in place policies that encourage investment, innovation, and the entrepreneurial spirit that makes America the beacon of economic opportunity.

This bipartisan effort to rid the IAA of outdated, cumbersome regulatory schemes would not curtail the Securities and Exchange Commission’s ability to carry out its three-part mission, but rather, this measure is a much-needed legislative update to an antiquated law that does not reflect the current model of our nation’s small businesses and investors.  Through updating and reducing the costly regulations being placed on those who are making critical investments in our economy, our small business owners will have the ability to gain access to capital more easily so that more jobs can be created and more jobs can be preserved.  I remain committed to empowering our small businesses in Virginia’s Fifth District and beyond with the opportunity to succeed, and I look forward to this bill’s consideration in the House.

If you need any additional information or if we may be of assistance to you, please visit my website at or call my Washington office: (202) 225-4711, Charlottesville office: (434) 973-9631, Danville office: (434) 791-2596, or Farmville office: (434) 395-0120.

Robert Hurt represents the Fifth District of Virginia in Congress.