House Small Business Committee Hearings

February 12, 2020

The House Committee on Small Business is holding two hearings this week: one on innovation and small-business collaboration with universities; the other on employee-owned small businesses.

Innovation Pipeline

ON Tuesday, Feb. 11, the Committee held a hearing, “The Innovation Pipeline: From Universities to Small Businesses,” focusing on the close relationships and frequent collaboration between small businesses and research universities. Among the witnesses were representatives of universities, accelerator and incubator programs and small-business owners who underscored the importance of bolstering resources for programs such as Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs which serve to fund proof of concept and early R&D activities for new innovations.

NSBA, and it’s high-tech arm, the Small Business Technology Council, has been urging Congress to permanently authorize and increase the funding levels for the SBIR and STTR programs and resist any attempts to diminish small-business participation in vital innovation programs. Furthermore, SBTC has been active in pushing lawmakers to fund the Rapid Innovation Fund (RIF) program which was not funded for FY2020.  This highly competitive, merit-based DOD program was in part developed by SBTC to provide funding for high-tech small businesses to cross the valley of death separating development of new and innovative technology from its transition to the marketplace or a program of record.

Click here to learn more on RIF funding.

Employee-Owned Small Businesses

Today, Wednesday, Feb. 12, the Committee is holding a hearing, “Challenges and Benefits of Employee-owned Small Businesses,” which will explore the employee ownership mode, its upsides and challenges, and ways current federal programs can be optimized to minimize those challenges.

Click here to watch the hearing and download witness testimony.