February 16, 2001

Sen. Bond Address National Women's Business Council on Federal Contracting Opportunities

WASHINGTON, Feb. 14 — Speaking to the National Women's Business Council (NWBC), Senator Christopher S. "Kit" Bond said he is continuing his work to boost federal contracting opportunities for women-owned businesses and to provide tax relief for all small businesses this year.

"This is an exciting time for women-owned business issues in the Senate," Bond told MWBC members Wednesday. "I am confident the 107th Congress will make a difference for women-owned enterprises — the fastest-growing segment of the small business community.

"At the direction of Congress, the Small Business Administration (SBA) is beginning a badly-needed study of federal contracting practices to identify industries in which women-owned small businesses are under represented" added Bond, chairman of the Senate Committee on Small Business. "This study should help us get a better handle on what needs to be done to ensure that the 5 percent contracting goal for women-owned business is achieved."

The staff of the Small Business Committee currently is working with the SBA's new office of Contract Assistance for Women Business Owners (CAWBO), which has been charged with conducting the study, he said.

Bond also highlighted one of the first bills he introduced this year, the "Small Business Works Act of 2001" (S.189), which will provide a range of tax relief and simplification of the tax code for small business owners. The bill contains two of the key tax relief recommendations identified during last year's National Women's Small Business Summit, including repeal of the Individual Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) and an increase of the self-employed health Insurance deduction to 100 percent beginning on Jan. 1, 2001.

"Any woman starting a small business has had to persevere, sometimes against great odds, to attain her goal of successful entrepreneurship. That is why we owe our women small business owners all that we can do to break down barriers, remove roadblocks and provide the incentives they need to grow.

"I look forward to working closely with NWBC and the small business community as a whole to ensure that this Congress does all it can to help women-owned business owners achieve their goals and enhance our economy with new jobs and sustained growth," Bond concluded.

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