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Congress Pushes For Job Creation Bills

Written by Jenna Weiner
Published: 12/3/2009

Congress hopes their proposed job-creation bill will relieve unemployment rates.

It may be good news for small business owners that Democrats recently convened in Washington to discuss ways to increase lending to SMBs and funding for transportation projects. Officials hope the proposed funding will help generate jobs.

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The projects are included in a job-creation bill Democrats hope to pass in Congress next month to address the high U.S. unemployment rate. The proposals were discussed on the eve of President Obama's forum to address unemployment.

Key Democrats in the House of Representatives said $69 billion worth of highway construction and other infrastructure projects could be underway within months if the money is included in a jobs bill. "Given my druthers, $69 billion would be a nice down payment," Transportation and Infrastructure committee chairman James Oberstar said.

The transportation funding proposal follows Democratic push in the Senate to use money from TARP to help SMB expansion in a time when banks are reluctant to lend them money. This initiative was spurred when smallbusiness owners testified in the Senate that their efforts to expand their operations had been frustrated by their inability to get loans from banks which have benefited from last year's financial-industry bailout.

Democrats hope their jobs package will reduce the 10.2 percent unemployment rate before November 2010; relief is hoped for as Americans are currently enduring the highest jobless rate in more than two decades.

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