The House voted on Thursday to pass legislation that would create a $30-billion lending fund for small businesses and $12 billion in tax credits.
The bill, called the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act, was approved by a 237-187 vote. The voting went almost entirely along party lines with just one Republican supporting the measure. The legislation passed the Senate last week, 61-38, thanks to the votes of two retiring Republican senators. It now goes to President Barack Obama for his approval.
The $30-billion loan fund will be administered by the Treasury Department and go to banks with less than $10 billion in assets. Another $12 billion in tax breaks would let businesses write off more of the cost of buying new equipment and making improvements - the expensing limits would be increased to $500,000, double the current amount.
"This bill includes billions in tax cuts specifically targeted to small businesses so they can put more of their own resources into growing their business," SBA administrator Karen Mills said in a press release. "This bill is the right step forward for our nation's small businesses and our economy."