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Ernst, Shaheen Call for Comprehensive Review of Veterans’ Small Business Lending Programs

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), a combat veteran and Ranking Member of the Senate Small Business Committee, and U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Chair of the Senate Small Business Committee, sent a bipartisan letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) asking for a comprehensive review of the role that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and other federal agencies play in helping veterans, reservists, and their spouses gain financial literacy and increase their access to capital.

In their letter, the Senators wrote, “Congress needs more information on the issues facing veterans trying to access capital, what financial literacy programs are available to them and how they could be more effective…We remain concerned that the findings and recommendations outlined in the December 21, 2023 [GAO] report also reflect broader issues with the effectiveness of federal programs designed to support veteran, reservist, and military spouses trying to start and grow small businesses.”

Read the full letter here.

Ernst’s Stop Stolen Valor for Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Contractors Act, which works to reduce fraud and stop stolen valor in the SBA’s service-disabled veteran-owned small business contracting program, was included in the National Defense Authorization Act. Ernst also led the bipartisan VET Act to reauthorize the SBA’s Boots to Business program and help America’s servicemembers succeed in small business and entrepreneurship after their time in the military.