Departing SBA Administrator Karen Mills had the pleasure of testifying at one final House Small Business Committee hearing searching for answers to the question, “what’s next?”.
Sequestration is what’s next: The potential of $85 billion in spending cuts this year has already begun grinding the government contracting food chain to a halt. It’s also led her, like all government agencies, to lay down “what if” plans that will impact programs, although there is much debate on how severely the cuts will actually impact each program.
During Mills’s time at the helm, she revived an SBA loan market that had frozen during the financial crisis. The SBA has done a good job of marketing their loan programs since she took over. The next Administrator will have an easier time growing on what she and her team had put in place.
Mills believes the Affordable Care Act will benefit business owners who, starting this fall, will be able to shop for health insurance policies in state exchanges. She downplayed the vocal frustration many businesses with over 50 employees have with the new requirement that they cover workers. “Most small businesses over 50 people do offer health insurance right now,” she says. “We will help people get a much more clear idea of their options and the indications are that they will have more options for more affordable care.”
Mills’s legacy may be raising the profile, both within the government and in the public’s eyes. Now that the SBA is more visible perhaps the next administrator can get it into another gear and move the needle, to include getting agencies small business procurement goals met.
Farewell Karen Mills. Good job. Don’t forget about…
Portions sourced from BW: Departing SBA Chief: What’s Next for Small Business
In a related BW article they ask: How Mills did at the helm of the SBA