Home > 107th Congressional Bills > S. 296 (is) To authorize the conveyance of a segment of the Loring Petroleum Pipeline, Maine, and related easements. [Introduced in Senate] ...

S. 296 (is) To authorize the conveyance of a segment of the Loring Petroleum Pipeline, Maine, and related easements. [Introduced in Senate] ...


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                                                        Calendar No. 21
107th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                 S. 295

                           [Report No. 107-4]

To provide emergency relief to small businesses affected by significant 
   increases in the prices of heating oil, natural gas, propane, and 
                   kerosene, and for other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                            February 8, 2001

  Mr. Kerry (for himself, Mr. Lieberman, Ms. Snowe, Mr. Bingaman, Ms. 
  Landrieu, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Domenici, Mr. Levin, Mr. Wellstone, Mr. 
Jeffords, Mr. Harkin, Mr. Schumer, Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Kohl, Mr. Edwards, 
  Mr. Leahy, Mr. Baucus, Ms. Collins, Mr. Smith of New Hampshire, Mr. 
Dodd, Mr. Chafee,  Mr. Bayh, Mr. Kennedy, Mr. Inouye, Mr. Daschle, Mr. 
 Bond, Mr. Reed, Mr. Corzine, Mr. Torricelli, Mr. Akaka, Ms. Cantwell, 
Mrs. Murray, Mr. Cleland, and Mr. Enzi) introduced the following bill; 
  which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Small Business

                             March 21, 2001

                 Reported by Mr. Bond with an amendment
 [Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert the part printed 
                               in italic]

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To provide emergency relief to small businesses affected by significant 
   increases in the prices of heating oil, natural gas, propane, and 
                   kerosene, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

<DELETED>SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.</DELETED>

<DELETED>    This Act may be cited as the ``Small Business Energy 
Emergency Relief Act of 2001''.</DELETED>

<DELETED>SEC. 2. FINDINGS.</DELETED>

<DELETED>    The Congress finds that--</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    (1) a significant number of small businesses in 
        the United States use heating oil, natural gas, propane, or 
        kerosene to heat their facilities and for other 
        purposes;</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    (2) a significant number of small businesses in 
        the United States sell, distribute, market, or otherwise engage 
        in commerce directly related to heating oil, natural gas, 
        propane, and kerosene; and</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    (3) sharp and significant increases in the price 
        of heating oil, natural gas, propane, or kerosene--</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    (A) disproportionately harm small 
                businesses dependent on those fuels or that use, sell, 
                or distribute those fuels in the ordinary course of 
                their business, and can cause them substantial economic 
                injury;</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    (B) can negatively affect the national 
                economy and regional economies;</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    (C) have occurred in the winters of 1983-
                1984, 1988-1989, 1996-1997, and 1999-2000; 
                and</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    (D) can be caused by a host of factors, 
                including global or regional supply difficulties, 
                weather conditions, insufficient inventories, refinery 
                capacity, transportation, and competitive structures in 
                the markets, causes that are often unforeseeable to 
                those who own and operate small businesses.</DELETED>

<DELETED>SEC. 3. SMALL BUSINESS ENERGY EMERGENCY DISASTER LOAN 
              PROGRAM.</DELETED>

<DELETED>    Section 7(b) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 636(b)) 
is amended by inserting after paragraph (3) the following:</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(4)(A) In this paragraph--</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    ``(i) the term `heating fuel' means 
                heating oil, natural gas, propane, and kerosene; 
                and</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    ``(ii) the term `sharp and significant 
                increase' shall have the meaning given that term by the 
                Administrator, in consultation with the Secretary of 
                Energy.</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(B) The Administration may make such disaster 
        loans, including revolving lines of credit, either directly or 
        in cooperation with banks or other lending institutions through 
        agreements to participate on an immediate or deferred basis, to 
        assist a small business concern that has suffered or that is 
        likely to suffer substantial economic injury as the result of a 
        sharp and significant increase in the price of heating 
        fuel.</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(C) A small business concern described in 
        subparagraph (B) shall be eligible to apply for assistance 
        under this paragraph beginning on the date on which the sharp 
        and significant increase in heating fuel cost occurs, as 
        determined by the Administration, and ending 6 months after 
        that date.</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(D) Any loan or guarantee extended pursuant to 
        this paragraph shall be made at the same interest rate as 
        economic injury loans under paragraph (2).</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(E) No loan may be made under this paragraph, 
        either directly or in cooperation with banks or other lending 
        institutions through agreements to participate on an immediate 
        or deferred basis, if the total amount outstanding and 
        committed to the borrower under this subsection would exceed 
        $1,500,000, unless such applicant constitutes a major source of 
        employment in its surrounding area, as determined by the 
        Administration, in which case the Administration, in its 
        discretion, may waive the $1,500,000 limitation.</DELETED>
        <DELETED>    ``(F) For purposes of assistance under this 
        paragraph--</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    ``(i) a declaration of a disaster area 
                shall be required, and shall be made by the President 
                or the Administrator; or</DELETED>
                <DELETED>    ``(ii) if no declaration has been made 
                pursuant to clause (i), the Governor of a State in 
                which a sharp and significant increase in the price of 
                heating fuel has occurred may certify to the 
                Administration that small business concerns have 
                suffered economic injury as a result of such increase 
                and are in need of financial assistance which is not 
                available on reasonable terms in that State, and upon 
                receipt of such certification, the Administration may 
                make such loans as would have been available under this 
                paragraph if a disaster declaration had been 
                issued.''.</DELETED>

<DELETED>SEC. 4. GUIDELINES.</DELETED>

<DELETED>    Not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this 
Act, the Administrator of the Small Business Administration shall issue 
such guidelines as the Administrator determines to be necessary to 
carry out this Act and the amendments made by this Act.</DELETED>

<DELETED>SEC. 5. EFFECTIVE DATE.</DELETED>

<DELETED>    The amendments made by this Act shall apply to economic 
injury suffered or likely to be suffered as the result of sharp and 
significant increases in the price of heating fuel occurring on or 
after November 1, 2000.</DELETED>

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Small Business and Farm Energy 
Emergency Relief Act of 2001''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds that--
            (1) a significant number of small businesses in the United 
        States, non-farm as well as agricultural producers, use heating 
        oil, natural gas, propane, kerosene, or electricity to heat 
        their facilities and for other purposes;
            (2) a significant number of small businesses in the United 
        States sell, distribute, market, or otherwise engage in 
        commerce directly related to heating oil, natural gas, propane, 
        and kerosene; and
            (3) sharp and significant increases in the price of heating 
        oil, natural gas, propane, or kerosene--
                    (A) disproportionately harm small businesses 
                dependent on those fuels or that use, sell, or 
                distribute those fuels in the ordinary course of their 
                business, and can cause them substantial economic 
                injury;
                    (B) can negatively affect the national economy and 
                regional economies;
                    (C) have occurred in the winters of 1983-1984, 
                1988-1989, 1996-1997, and 1999-2000; and
                    (D) can be caused by a host of factors, including 
                global or regional supply difficulties, weather 
                conditions, insufficient inventories, refinery 
                capacity, transportation, and competitive structures in 
                the markets, causes that are often unforeseeable to 
                those who own and operate small businesses.

SEC. 3. SMALL BUSINESS ENERGY EMERGENCY DISASTER LOAN PROGRAM.

    (a) In General.--Section 7(b) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
636(b)) is amended by inserting after paragraph (3) the following:
            ``(4)(A) In this paragraph--
                    ``(i) the term `heating fuel' means heating oil, 
                natural gas, propane, or kerosene; and
                    ``(ii) the term `sharp and significant increase' 
                shall have the meaning given that term by the 
                Administrator, in consultation with the Secretary of 
                Energy.
            ``(B) The Administration may make such loans, either 
        directly or in cooperation with banks or other lending 
        institutions through agreements to participate on an immediate 
        or deferred basis, to assist a small business concern that has 
        suffered or that is likely to suffer substantial economic 
        injury as the result of a sharp and significant increase in the 
        price of heating fuel or electricity.
            ``(C) Any loan or guarantee extended pursuant to this 
        paragraph shall be made at the same interest rate as economic 
        injury loans under paragraph (2).
            ``(D) No loan may be made under this paragraph, either 
        directly or in cooperation with banks or other lending 
        institutions through agreements to participate on an immediate 
        or deferred basis, if the total amount outstanding and 
        committed to the borrower under this subsection would exceed 
        $1,500,000, unless such applicant constitutes a major source of 
        employment in its surrounding area, as determined by the 
        Administration, in which case the Administration, in its 
        discretion, may waive the $1,500,000 limitation.
            ``(E) For purposes of assistance under this paragraph--
                    ``(i) a declaration of a disaster area based on 
                conditions specified in this paragraph shall be 
                required, and shall be made by the President or the 
                Administrator; or
                    ``(ii) if no declaration has been made pursuant to 
                clause (i), the Governor of a State in which a sharp 
                and significant increase in the price of heating fuel 
                or electricity has occurred may certify to the 
                Administration that small business concerns have 
                suffered economic injury as a result of such increase 
                and are in need of financial assistance which is not 
                available on reasonable terms in that State, and upon 
                receipt of such certification, the Administration may 
                make such loans as would have been available under this 
                paragraph if a disaster declaration had been issued.
            ``(F) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, loans 
        made under this paragraph may be used by a small business 
        concern described in subparagraph (B) to convert from the use 
        of heating fuel or electricity to a renewable or alternative 
        energy source, including agriculture and urban waste, 
        geothermal energy, solar energy, wind energy, and fuel 
        cells.''.
    (b) Conforming Amendments Relating to Heating Fuel and 
Electricity.--Section 3(k) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632(k)) 
is amended--
            (1) by inserting ``, sharp and significant increases in the 
        price of heating fuel or electricity'' after ``civil 
        disorders''; and
            (2) by inserting ``other'' before ``economic''.

SEC. 4. AGRICULTURAL PRODUCER EMERGENCY LOANS.

    (a) In General.--Section 321(a) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural 
Development Act (7 U.S.C. 1961(a)) is amended--
            (1) in the first sentence--
                    (A) by striking ``operations have'' and inserting 
                ``operations (i) have''; and
                    (B) by inserting before ``: Provided,'' the 
                following: ``, or (ii)(I) are owned or operated by such 
                an applicant that is also a small business concern (as 
                defined in section 3 of the Small Business Act (15 
                U.S.C. 632)), and (II) have suffered or are likely to 
                suffer substantial economic injury on or after June 1, 
                2000, as the result of a sharp and significant increase 
                in energy costs or input costs from energy sources 
                occurring on or after June 1, 2000, in connection with 
                an energy emergency declared by the President or the 
                Secretary'';
            (2) in the third sentence, by inserting before the period 
        at the end the following: ``or by an energy emergency declared 
by the President or the Secretary''; and
            (3) in the fourth sentence--
                    (A) by inserting ``or energy emergency'' after 
                ``natural disaster'' each place it appears; and
                    (B) by inserting ``or declaration'' after 
                ``emergency designation''.
    (b) Funding.--Funds available on the date of enactment of this Act 
for emergency loans under subtitle C of the Consolidated Farm and Rural 
Development Act (7 U.S.C. 1961 et seq.) made to meet the needs 
resulting from natural disasters shall be available to carry out the 
amendments made by subsection (a).

SEC. 5. GUIDELINES.

    Not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Administrator of the Small Business Administration and the Secretary of 
Agriculture shall each issue such guidelines as the Administrator and 
the Secretary, as applicable, determines to be necessary to carry out 
this Act and the amendments made by this Act.

SEC. 6. REPORTS.

    (a) Small Business.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
final publication by the Administrator of the Small Business 
Administration of the guidelines issued under section 5, the 
Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Small Business of the 

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