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Senate Proceeding on Mar 16th, 2011 :: 5:35:15 to 5:56:00
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Mary Landrieu

5:35:15 to 5:35:35( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: stress again -- several people have come down to the floor and said, why aren't w -- i guess meaning democrats -- focused like a laser on closing the budget gap? let me say, this is an effort to close the budget gap and to reduce the debt and to close the annual deficit because that can

Mary Landrieu

5:35:15 to 5:56:00( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Mary Landrieu

Mary Landrieu

5:35:36 to 5:35:56( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: be done by cutting discretionary spending, cutting defense spending, where it's wasteful and not effective; raising revenues, where it is appropriate, particularly for those making over $1 billion a year would be a good place to start -- making over ferredz 1 million a year would be a good place to start. and equally important to all the

Mary Landrieu

5:35:57 to 5:36:17( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: above is creating an atmosphere so the private sector can get about the business of creating jobs. that's what this business does. that's why senator snowe and i are on the floor. that's why our committee voted this bill out we know it's important. so to innovate -- innovation creates jobs. and i want to show you just

Mary Landrieu

5:36:18 to 5:36:38( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: three examples as we're waiting for senators to come to the floor to talk about their amendments. i wanted to share one story. this is from connecticut. might i say, that over the 20-plus years of this program, there have been small businesses in every state that have

Mary Landrieu

5:36:39 to 5:36:59( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: benefited either through grants or through contracts. the department of defense, which has about $1 billion of their research and development set aside for this purpose, other departments called in grantings. the department of defense actually enters into contracts with small businesses.

Mary Landrieu

5:37:00 to 5:37:22( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: now, i'm not sure if this came out of the department of defense. it's not noted here. but one of our agencies thought it might be important to create a device to safely transport toxic chemicals. now, i'm from louisiana. we have a tremendous -- we're

Mary Landrieu

5:37:23 to 5:37:43( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: proud of our industrial base in petrochemicals. some things we produce are really, really safe. some things we produce are dangerous but necessary to undergird our economy. so the transport of these toxic chemicals, to do it safely is important. so one of the agencies -- and i don't have exactly which one -- identified a company in

Mary Landrieu

5:37:44 to 5:38:05( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: connecticut that might be able to come up with some such device. they did. that particular company, which is now atmi, paid more than ten times in taxes now that that invention has been commercialized, as we can see here on this chart. but what people really need to

Mary Landrieu

5:38:06 to 5:38:27( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: know is this company paid more -- ten times in taxes than they received from the program. this is just one example. atmi went from 40 employees to employing 800 people world bide. now, i'm hoping that their company is still located in danbury, concomp.

Mary Landrieu

5:38:28 to 5:38:51( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: -- danbury, connecticut. there is no requirement in this particular program for that to occur, and we wouldn't want that to have that requirement because we're producing technology and innovation for america and for the world, and our people will benefit from t but let's hope that that is the just one example.

Mary Landrieu

5:38:52 to 5:39:13( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: a second example comes from ann arbor, michigan. senator stabenow was on the floor earlier today. and i want to thank her so very much. she was a very strong supporter of our very important small business jobs and innovation bill in the last congress. i'm pleased that the leadership has given our committee an opportunity to be on the floor

Mary Landrieu

5:39:14 to 5:39:34( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: with another important bill so early in this congress. i think leader reid feels strongly -- as strongly as i do -- that there are more ways to cut a deficit than the one being trumpeted on the other side of this capital. -- on the

Mary Landrieu

5:39:35 to 5:39:55( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: other side of this capitol. and it is not even a way because it won't work. all we hear from the other side is cut discretionary spend because we'll get there. a, we won't get there. and, b, we will shut off both feet in the process of getting there because it is a dead end. you cannot get to where we want

Mary Landrieu

5:39:56 to 5:40:16( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: to go the way some people are arguing. we can get to reducing our deficit, eliminating our debt by doing all four of the things that are mentioned. and one of them is creating jobs and doing it in the private sector. this is the cybernet ammo sorter. this did come from the defense department.

Mary Landrieu

5:40:17 to 5:40:38( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: when people ask, how can you save millions of dollars? we will, this particular invention has saved the government hundreds of millions of dollars in defense costs over the five years. it started in michigan, now is expanding to florida. that will make senator nelson very happy. it was initially implemented at

Mary Landrieu

5:40:39 to 5:40:59( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: one of our camps in kuwait. it is in support of "operation freedom." it is now also in for the irwin, the national traing center in the mojave desert, where troops train before deployment. it saves our troops many, many man-hours and hundreds of millions of dollars. so there is another way to cut

Mary Landrieu

5:41:00 to 5:41:21( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: spending besides just slashing and burning some of the best programs in the world, literally. some of the best programs in the world have been left on the chopping block, notiou the senate is not in order just in america-- --not just in america. in the world.

Mary Landrieu

5:41:22 to 5:41:43( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: i might suggest to look outside the box and they think of other ways to reduce spending which is investing in smart investments that streamline and create taxpayers money and create jobs at the same time. thus, companies can pay in more taxes at the local, state, and federal level and we continue to get spending under control and

Mary Landrieu

5:41:44 to 5:42:06( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: reduce our deficit. so that is the cybernet systems ammo system. leave it to the department of defense to make up such this is beacon interactive turbowork out of cambridge, massachusetts. this technology created technology -- or this company to

Mary Landrieu

5:42:07 to 5:42:27( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: help sailors keep the fleet safe through streamlined and uniform maintenance. it will be going now into all 250 ships in the navy. 460,000 sailors will use this technology inteled out of the sbir program everily day to protect and preserve our warships. in its first full year of

Mary Landrieu

5:42:28 to 5:42:49( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: implement thairks the software should give a 300% return on the initial sbir investment. mr. president, you know this because you've been a very strong advocate nationally, not just in the state of oregon, for small business. but you know that with a little investment at the right time, there can be a tremendous up side. and that's what you're seeing

Mary Landrieu

5:42:50 to 5:43:13( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: here in this program. our initial grants are only $150,000. people might say, jerks you know, when can you do with $150,000? we will, $150,000 given to the scientists or the engineer or the inventor just at the right time can help provide that half year or year of research and

Mary Landrieu

5:43:14 to 5:43:34( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: development necessary to grow and to mobilize the technologies, to develop it into something that really could work. and then phase 2 comes in with the potential, if it looks inviting and exciting and interesting to the agency, they

Mary Landrieu

5:43:35 to 5:43:56( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: might award such a grantee another $150,000 phase 2. and then it can go up to $1.5 million. and that's the way these companies or these ideas grow. now at some point this program ceases to be necessary because what happens is it either becomes clear to the people managing it that that idea has failed, that that technology is

Mary Landrieu

5:43:57 to 5:44:17( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: not going to work and the grant is simply shut down or the contract comes to an end. and, yes, that money will be lost. but what often happens -- not in every case -- what often happens is that technology goes to such a phase that it becomes so promising that venture capitalists step in, like they

Mary Landrieu

5:44:18 to 5:44:39( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: should, and other investors step in and take that company way up. that's what happened to qualcomm. they were 20 years ago, nobody ever heard of them. they got a small grant from this program. and they were one of the winners. we were winners too, not just

Mary Landrieu

5:44:40 to 5:45:01( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: the company, because now they employ 17,800 people operating in more than 30 countries worldwide and paid in taxes in one year -- in one year -- half of the cost of this entire program. and as the gentleman, the who, the doctors who researched this program said to us in our hearing, because we have new

Mary Landrieu

5:45:02 to 5:45:23( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: members of our committee, five new members from the republican side, and senator snowe and i both wanted to give them a chance to really understand this bill. and i'm proud to say that they, all but one supported it coming out of committee. when they really understood, and of course some of them had served in the house before and were familiar with this.

Mary Landrieu

5:45:24 to 5:45:45( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: but when they really understood that this has really been one of the most successful federal programs. and when it was reviewed by, i think it was a review of the program, he said, let me tell you, senator, if every single grant produces a company, you're running the wrong kind of program, because this is a high-risk effort.

Mary Landrieu

5:45:46 to 5:46:06( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: but it's a risk that over time has paid off tremendously to the taxpayer and will continue if it's continued to run in that fashion. so we've tightened up in this bill before us fraud and abuse statutes. we have put more oversight, which both senator snowe and i?? thought was important but not

Mary Landrieu

5:46:07 to 5:46:28( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: too heavily burden the program but just to make sure that our people and our departments whr-rbgs it's in -- whether it's in defense or n.i.h. or the nasa program are really utilizing this program to the extent and the spirit that congress intends. so we've made some, we think, adjustments. well, we think some perfections

Mary Landrieu

5:46:29 to 5:46:50( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: through some adjustments and modifications. we think we've made this program, hopefully, even stronger. but not every grant that is given will result in jobs, and it will be folded. but when it works, it really really works. and we are so benefited as a nation. in fact, there was also testimony given before our committee that countries all

Mary Landrieu

5:46:51 to 5:47:13( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: over the world are trying to model some of their programs after this one, mr. president, because they keep asking how is it in america that you have such an innovative spirit? how is it that you start so many small businesses, and many of them -- not all -- succeed? what is it? and it's a number of things. it's our own nature and spirit.

Mary Landrieu

5:47:14 to 5:47:34( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: but it's because people have traditionally had a variety of accesses to capital, whether it's equity in their home or savings account or banking system that's for the most part very honest and transparent. we've had some difficulties in just the few past years with some of the antics on wall street that caused people, some catch a breath for that. but generally compared to many

Mary Landrieu

5:47:35 to 5:47:56( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: other countries in the world, our people have access to those things -- private property that they own. in many countries people can't even own private property. you can't even get a clear title to property, so how do you borrow against it to start a business? you don't. and so it's many things that go into this miracle that we call the american economy.

Mary Landrieu

5:47:57 to 5:48:19( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: and this is a big part of it. now, the federal government doesn't do it all, but i'm hoping that as people consider this debate, that every state in the union will create a similar program. some of them already have, and i'm going to try to provide to all the members here a list of what their individual states have done. because if you think about it, and the large cities, whether it

Mary Landrieu

5:48:20 to 5:48:40( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: be new york or san francisco or detroit or chicago, if every city government would think about setting aside a small portion of some of their research and development money to really p-rb out the -- to really push out the small businesses that aren't obvious to, sometimes to wall street in new york or they're not obvious

Mary Landrieu

5:48:41 to 5:49:01( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: to pennsylvania avenue in washington, or they're not exactly located in just the silicon valley in california. but there are bugged entrepreneurs and -- there are budding entrepreneurs and americans with great ideas and great drive and great determination. and i'm really hoping that our government can be smarter. and i'd like the federal government to be as smart as it

Mary Landrieu

5:49:02 to 5:49:22( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: can possibly be. and i'm hoping that our state governments will look at this program as a model in potentially cities. now i can tell you one thing that i'm very excited about, and i haven't talked with him about it specifically to this, but i have spoken at some length to the goldman sachs executives. and i want to speak for a minute about a program that i'm very

Mary Landrieu

5:49:23 to 5:49:44( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: impressed with. it's not something that we're doing. it's something they're doing, but i think it's worth mentioning here. goldman sachs has decided to try to create 10,000 new small businesses in america. not new small businesses. they're trying to grow 10,000 small businesses in america.

Mary Landrieu

5:49:45 to 5:50:07( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: they have a very strategic plan and one that i'm watching very closely for a number of reasons. one, their model is scalable and other companies could potentially do it. and maybe we could model some kind of federal program if theirs is successful. secondly, i'm watching it closely because one of the cities they chose for their pilot is the city of new orleans, a city that i represent.

Mary Landrieu

5:50:08 to 5:50:29( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: my brother serves as mayor there now. he is very engaged with the leadership there because new orleans has become a hotbed of innovation. and when i hear president obama talking about outcompeting and out-innovating, that's not just going to happen on pennsylvania avenue or right down on the intersection of m and wisconsin and georgetown.

Mary Landrieu

5:50:30 to 5:50:51( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: it's going to happen on canal straoegt in the lower -- street in the lower ninth ward in towns like new orleans and in places all over the world. and goldman sachs is saying, all right, mr. makers you get the city leadership -- mr. mayor, you get the city leadership, you get one of the community colleges to give the training.

Mary Landrieu

5:50:52 to 5:51:12( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: we jointly choose these entrepreneurs that have promised and already established, they have proven they can run a business and they can turn a profit. but they're just stagnating. they have the potential to be larger but they're not. what is it that's causing them? maybe lack of knowledge, lack of capital. so our delgado community

Mary Landrieu

5:51:13 to 5:51:34( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: college, and i'm very proud of delgado, one of the finest community colleges in the country, stepped up and said let us do the training. when they succeed and successfully exit the training -- and i believe it's a six-month to nine-month program, at the other end goldman sachs gives them a check for "x" amount of money. i'm not sure if it's $35,000 or

Mary Landrieu

5:51:35 to 5:51:55( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: $100,000 or $200,000. i'll get that in the record so we can be clear. but they give them a check so they have the capital and the know how. and they have the support of some of the nonprofits in the area to help them to grow. song about that, mr. president -- so think about that, mr. president. if that is something only one company is doing, think about

Mary Landrieu

5:51:56 to 5:52:17( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: what companies like chevron, what they're doing to help small business. i think about other companies, american express with their plum card, talk about what they're doing. i'm not talking about companies, just an example of companies out there supporting small business. the federal government can do its part as well. and so we have an obligation.

Mary Landrieu

5:52:18 to 5:52:38( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: we can't do everything, but we most certainly can do our part as many large companies around the country and the world are also thinking what can they do to help grow small businesses in their area. so that's just one example. and i want to -- we're going to

Mary Landrieu

5:52:39 to 5:52:59( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: watch the success of some of these programs in the private sector, and then we'll get some of their best ideas and potentially even strengthen our partnership. but this is a partnership between the federal government and private small businesses throughout our country. let me just switch to a minute to say a couple of the

Mary Landrieu

5:53:00 to 5:53:22( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: organizations that are supporting this program. i don't see anyone on the floor at this time to speak, so let me just read into the record again some of the comments that we received from very strong organizations. the small business technology council says not only does this

Mary Landrieu

5:53:23 to 5:53:43( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: sbir program spur technological innovation and entrepreneurship, it helps create high-tech jobs and does so without increasing the federal deficit. the national small business association says the uncertain future of this program -- and as i said, for six years it's been operating on short-term, you

Mary Landrieu

5:53:44 to 5:54:04( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: know, short-term arrangements. three months here, two months there. for six years nobody has had any idea, either from the private sector, from some of the best labs, from our agencies, whether this program would be there next week. that is just unconscionable. that is why senator snowe and i have fought so hard to get this

Mary Landrieu

5:54:05 to 5:54:25( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: program authorized. and i see senator coburn on the floor, the senator from oklahoma, and i want to thank him because because of his good compromising efforts with us last congress, we're going to be able to authorize this program for eight years. as the senator will know because he's been a strong advocate for

Mary Landrieu

5:54:26 to 5:54:47( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: good management and streamlining, programs like this need certainty. the labs, our agencies need to know. we're looking out two years or three years for this new technology, where there's a company out here we think could provide it to us. we need to know. so this eight-year authorization is important. and i thank him because some

Mary Landrieu

5:54:48 to 5:55:08( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: programs are only authorized for four years or five years. but we feel because we've been in limbo for six years, it would be a good idea to give that eight-year authorization. and just one more comment for 30 seconds, and i'll yield the floor. i want to read in to the record the letters of support from a

Mary Landrieu

5:55:09 to 5:55:29( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: short list of companies, and as additional ones come in we will read into the record their support. the bay area innovation alliance has sent their support. the biodistrict of new orleans. the biotechnology industrial organization, connect of california. the national defense industrialists association. the new england innovation alliance. the national small business

Mary Landrieu

5:55:30 to 5:55:50( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: association. the national venture capital association. the small business association of new england. and i want to thank senator shaheen particularly for her support. small businesses of california. small business technology council. the v labs, inc. american chemical society. and the united states chamber of

Mary Landrieu

5:55:51 to 5:56:00( Edit History Discussion )

Mary Landrieu: commerce, just to name a few. so, mr. president, let's keep this debate moving forward. we've had a number of amendments today. i see senator coburn on the

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