Rep. Peter Welch unveiled legislation Monday morning aimed at freeing up credit to small businesses by expanding a successful Small Business Administration loan program. At Burlington s Chittenden Bank, Welch and members of Vermont s business and banking communities outlined details of Welch s bill, which is intended to bolster the popular SBA Express Loan Program. By increasing the SBA Express program s current cap of $350,000 to $2 million, the legislation would significantly increase access to credit for Vermont s small businesses. Welch will introduce his bill in the House this week.Small business owners throughout Vermont have struggled since the start of the current economic crisis with securing and retaining lines of credit. At a small business roundtable in Bennington last month, business owners told Welch that the tight credit environment was the single greatest difficulty they faced in expanding their businesses. Vermont small businesses need access to credit in order to weather this economic storm and right now, they don t have that, Welch said. By expanding the highly successful SBA Express Loan Program, I believe we can give our small businesses a key tool to survive these difficult economic times.Established in 1995 to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of SBA s lending programs, SBA Express reduces the amount of required paperwork and accelerates the approval process for small businesses. Because it significantly reduces costs for lending institutions, SBA Express has thrived during the economic crisis, even as other lending programs have not. The program s current loan cap of $350,000, however, has constrained the potential of SBA Express, experts agree.Bennington Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Joanne Erenhouse and Chittenden Bank SBA Loan Officer Robin Shanahan joined Welch at Monday s event to reiterate the importance for both small businesses and lenders of expanding SBA Express. Franklin County Regional Development Corporation Executive Director Tim Smith and Rutland Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Jamie Stewart also attended the event.Source: Welch’s office.
Seville, Spain | AFP | David de Gea deflected the attention away from Paul Pogba with another spectacular display of goalkeeping as Manchester United came away from their Champions League last 16, first leg against Sevilla in Spain with a 0-0 draw on Wednesday.De Gea made two breathtaking saves to deny Steven N’Zonzi and Luis Muriel at the end of the first half at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, denying Sevilla a lead to take to England for next month’s return.Sevilla were the more likely side, with United offering little going forward despite the presence of Alexis Sanchez, Romelu Lukaku and Juan Mata in their attack.Lukaku had a late goal disallowed, but United’s was the kind of cautious approach seen time and again in such games by Mourinho’s teams down the years.Their inability, unwillingness even, to get an away goal leaves the tie wide open ahead of the second leg, with United looking to reach the quarter-finals in their first appearance in the knockout stage of the Champions League since 2014.“The only moment where we felt relieved was in the last couple of moments of the first half when from a couple of our mistakes in possession they had a couple of good situations and De Gea made good saves,” said Mourinho.His team managed just one attempt on target to Sevilla’s eight, but Mourinho added: “Apart from that the game was even, but the statistics are what they are.“I really feel the result reflected what the game was — you ask me was it a good result, and I say it was not good and not bad.”Mourinho decided to leave Pogba out of his starting line-up, despite the Frenchman being back in the squad after illness had kept him out of United’s FA Cup win at Huddersfield Town.Fuelling the speculation of an uneasy relationship between Mourinho and the France midfielder, the United manager chose to select 21-year-old Scott McTominay ahead of Pogba in a midfield three. – Pogba thrown on –However, an untimely injury to Ander Herrera meant Pogba was thrown on after just 17 minutes of a first half dominated by the Spanish side.Sevilla, looking to make it past the last 16 of the Champions League after falling in their three previous appearances at this stage over the last decade, could and should have had a goal to show for their performance.De Gea made one good early save low down to deny Colombian Muriel, while Jesus Navas, impressive at right-back, fired just wide after latching onto Ever Banega’s cross-field pass.Stepping up the pressure just before half-time, Joaquin Correa’s shot from a good position was too easy for De Gea, but the Spain ‘keeper displayed all his class as he kept out headed attempts from N’Zonzi and Muriel from point-blank range, both saves requiring breathtaking reactions.The importance to United of not letting in a goal was clear — they had kept eight clean sheets in their 10 matches before heading to Andalusia, with their only defeats in that time coming in the two games in which they had conceded.And they were content to leave Spain with a 0-0 draw, continuing to soak up pressure in the second half and relying on Sevilla’s indecision in the final third.They were also aided by Pablo Sarabia’s inability to find the target from an inviting Muriel cross in the 73rd minute, before Lukaku’s goal was ruled out by French referee Clement Turpin for a handball as he controlled before shooting.“I am very happy with the character shown by the team,” Sevilla’s Italian coach Vincenzo Montella told Spanish television. “We have to be pleased with the performance. The 0-0 leaves everything open.”Whether Mourinho’s team should have been more adventurous will only become clear after the return in Manchester in three weeks.Share on: WhatsApp