Two bills on employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) have passed without dissent in the Small Business Committees in the House and the Senate, and both have bipartisan support.
By unanimous vote, the House Small Business Committee passed the Main Street Employee Ownership Act, sponsored by Nydia Velaquez (D-NY), with a friendly amendment from Steve Chabot (R-OH). Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) initially developed the concepts behind the bill.
The bill is focused on increasing the role of the Small Business Administration (SBA) in facilitating ESOPs by allowing the SBA to make loans to companies that they can then reloan to ESOPs. It also allows ESOP loans to be made under the SBA’s preferred lender program and updates the definition of ESOPs so that they do not have to have full voting rights to qualify.
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