Summary: H.R.4121 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Reported to House with amendment(s) (05/21/2014)

Small Business Development Centers Improvement Act of 2014 - (Sec. 2) Amends the Small Business Act with respect to the authority of the Small Business Administration (SBA) to use certain SBA programs, including the small business development center (SBDC) program, to provide grants, financial assistance, loans, export assistance, and subcontracting opportunities on federal contracts to specified small businesses, organizations, state governments, universities, companies, and other entities that provide assistance to smaller enterprises.

Declares that the SBA shall only use such programs to deliver entrepreneurial development services, entrepreneurial education, business incubation services, growth acceleration services, support for the development and maintenance of clusters, or business training. Makes such program requirements inapplicable to services provided to assist small business concerns owned by an Indian tribe.

Directs the SBA to report annually to specified congressional committees regarding all entrepreneurial development activities undertaken in the current fiscal year. Requires such report to include: (1) a description of the process used to award grants under each program and activity; (2) a list of all awardees, contractors, and vendors; and (3) the amount of funding obligated for the current fiscal year for each program and activity.

(Sec. 3) Bars the SBA from prohibiting applicants receiving grants under the SBDC program from marketing and advertising their services to individuals and small businesses.

(Sec. 4) Revises privacy requirements under such program to specify that SBDCs (including consortia and affiliated contractors or agents) are prohibited, subject to existing exceptions, from disclosing the name, address, or telephone number of any individual or small business concern receiving assistance to any state, local, or federal agency or third party.

(Sec. 5) Directs the SBA to consult with SBDC associations to develop documents governing data collection activities related to applicants receiving grants. Requires the SBA to report annually to specified congressional committees regarding such data collection activities.

(Sec. 6) Prohibits participation in private partnerships and cosponsorships with the SBA from limiting SBDCs from collecting fees or other income related to the operation of such partnerships and cosponsorships.

(Sec. 7) Removes a limitation on the amount of funds the SBA may use to pay the examination expenses of the SBDC accreditation program.

(Sec. 8) Prohibits the SBA from awarding grants (including contracts and cooperative agreements) under the SBDC program to any entity other than those that: (1) received such grants prior to September 30, 2014, and (2) seek to renew such grants after such date. Exempts not-for-profit institutions of higher education from such prohibition.

(Sec. 9) Authorizes the SBA to permit SBDCs to provide certain problem-solving assistance to a small business concern located outside the state, without regard to geographic proximity, if it is located in a presidentially-declared major disaster area, during the period of the declaration.

Requires a SBDC that provides counselors to such an area to ensure continuity of services in any state in which the SBDC otherwise provides services.

Requires the SBA to permit SBDC personnel to use any SBA designated site or facility for use to provide disaster recovery assistance.

(Sec. 10) Requires SBDC services to include educating unemployed individuals on entrepreneurship and working with them to start new businesses.