Virginia Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan, MBL Convene Roundtable Discussion with Local Black-Owned Small Businesses

Below is a press release from Virginia Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan.

Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan (VA-04) and the Metropolitan Business League (MBL) convened a roundtable discussion with a Biden-Harris Administration official and local Black-owned businesses in honor of National Black Business Month.

During the roundtable discussion, Congresswoman McClellan engaged with Black business owners and listened to their concerns and challenges. They voiced concerns around a lack of access to capital and the need for increased federal resources.

“Small businesses play a vital role in our local communities, generate billions of dollars in economic impact, and employ over 1.6 million Virginians across the Commonwealth,” said Congresswoman McClellan. “To celebrate National Black Business Month and Black entrepreneurs in Virginia, I was proud to partner with the Metropolitan Business League to host this roundtable discussion. It was a wonderful opportunity to connect Black-owned businesses with SBA officials and the federal resources made available by the Biden-Harris Administration and Congress.”

“The significance of Congresswomen McClellean joining us in partnership to help advance small, women, and minority owned businesses is immeasurable. It builds trust in those we serve, proves her commitment to accountability, and bridges the gap for accessibility to resources needed to help those business succeed,” said Micah White, Vice President for Business Development at the Metropolitan Business League.

Congresswoman McClellan also underscored House Republicans’ proposed funding cuts to the Small Business Administration (SBA) advanced out of the House Appropriations Committee’s FY2024 Financial Services Subcommittee funding bill. The bill includes: 

  • $823.1 million for SBA, a decrease of $72.4 million below FY2023 levels and $163.5 million below the requested amount for FY2024.
  • $299.3 million for SBA’s Entrepreneurial Development Programs, a decrease of $20.8 million below FY2023 levels and $20.8 million below the requested amount for FY2024.

“Small businesses, especially women- and minority-owned small businesses, face serious challenges like a lack of access to capital, affordable childcare options, and other operational difficulties,” continued Congresswoman McClellan. “Despite this, House Republicans are proposing devastating cuts to critical federal programs upon which our small businesses rely. They deserve better. I will continue fighting in Washington to ensure our small businesses owners have the resources and support they need to succeed.”

Congresswoman McClellan and MBL’s Micah White were joined by SBA’s District Director Carl Knoblock, small business owners, and local business advocates.

View photos from the event here

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