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Text of the National Womens’ High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force Act of 2012

This bill was introduced on May 17, 2012, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of May 17, 2012 (Introduced).

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Source: GPO

II

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 3196

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

May 17, 2012

(for herself and Ms. Landrieu) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship

A BILL

To establish the National Women's High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the National Women’s High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force Act of 2012.

2.

Definitions

In this Act—

(1)

the terms Administration and Administrator mean the Small Business Administration and the Administrator thereof, respectively;

(2)

the term Task Force means the National Women's High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force established under section 3; and

(3)

the term small business concern owned and controlled by women has the meaning given that term in section 3(n) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632(n)).

3.

National Women's High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force

(a)

Establishment

There is established the National Women’s High-Growth Business Bipartisan Task Force, which shall serve as an independent source of advice, research, and policy recommendations to—

(1)

the Administrator;

(2)

the Assistant Administrator of the Office of Women's Business Ownership of the Administration;

(3)

Congress;

(4)

the President; and

(5)

other Federal departments and agencies.

(b)

Membership

(1)

Number of members

The Task Force shall be composed of 15 members, of which—

(A)

8 shall be individuals who own small business concerns owned and controlled by women, including not fewer than 2 individuals who own small business concerns owned and controlled by women in industries in which women are traditionally underrepresented;

(B)

2 shall be individuals having expertise conducting research on women’s business, women’s entrepreneurship, new business development by women, and high-growth business development; and

(C)

5 shall be individuals who represent women’s business organizations, including women’s business centers and women’s business advocacy groups.

(2)

Appointment of members

(A)

Owners of small business concerns owned and controlled by women

Of the members of the Task Force described in paragraph (1)(A)—

(i)

2 shall be appointed by the Chairperson of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate;

(ii)

2 shall be appointed by the Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate;

(iii)

2 shall be appointed by the Chairperson of the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives; and

(iv)

2 shall be appointed by the Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives.

(B)

Other members

The members of the Task Force described in subparagraphs (B) and (C) of paragraph (1) shall be appointed by the Administrator.

(C)

Initial appointments

The individuals described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) shall appoint the initial members of the Task Force not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act.

(D)

Geographic considerations

In making an appointment under this paragraph, the individuals described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) shall give consideration to the geographic areas of the United States in which the members of the Task Force live and work, particularly to ensure that rural areas are represented on the Task Force.

(E)

Political affiliation

Not more than 8 members of the Task Force may be members of the same political party.

(3)

Chairperson

(A)

Election of chairperson

The members of the Task Force shall elect 1 member of the Task Force as Chairperson of the Task Force.

(B)

Vacancies

Any vacancy in the position of Chairperson of the Task Force shall be filled by the Task Force at the first meeting of the Task Force after the date on which the vacancy occurs.

(4)

Term of service

(A)

In general

Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the term of service of each member of the Task Force shall be 3 years.

(B)

Terms of initial appointees

Of the members of the Task Force first appointed after the date of enactment of this Act—

(i)

6 shall be appointed for a term of 4 years, including—

(I)

1 member appointed by the individuals described in each of clauses (i), (ii), (iii), and (iv) of paragraph (2)(A); and

(II)

2 members appointed by the Administrator; and

(ii)

5 shall be appointed for a term of 5 years, including—

(I)

1 member appointed by the individuals described in each of clauses (i), (ii), (iii), and (iv) of paragraph (2)(A); and

(II)

1 member appointed by the Administrator.

(5)

Vacancies

A vacancy on the Task Force shall be filled not later than 30 days after the date on which the vacancy occurs, in the manner in which the original appointment was made, and shall be subject to any conditions that applied to the original appointment. An individual chosen to fill a vacancy shall be appointed for the unexpired term of the member replaced.

(6)

Prohibition on Federal employment

(A)

In general

Except as provided in subparagraph (B), no member of the Task Force may serve as an officer or employee of the United States.

(B)

Exception

A member of the Task Force who accepts a position as an officer or employee of the United States after appointment to the Task Force may continue to serve on the Task Force for not more than 30 days after the date of such acceptance.

(7)

Compensation and expenses

(A)

No compensation

Each member of the Task Force shall serve without compensation.

(B)

Expenses

The Administrator shall reimburse the members of the Task Force for travel and subsistence expenses in accordance with section 5703 of title 5, United States Code.

(c)

Duties

The Task Force shall—

(1)

review and monitor plans and programs developed in the public and private sectors that affect the ability of small business concerns owned and controlled by women to obtain capital and credit and to access markets, and provide advice on improving coordination between such plans and programs;

(2)

monitor and promote the plans, programs, and operations of the Federal departments and agencies that contribute to the formation and development of small business concerns owned and controlled by women, and make recommendations to Federal departments and agencies concerning the coordination of such plans, programs, and operations;

(3)

develop and promote initiatives, policies, programs, and plans designed to encourage the formation of startups and high-growth small business concerns owned and controlled by women;

(4)

advise the Administrator on the development and implementation of an annual comprehensive plan for joint efforts by the public and private sectors to facilitate the formation and development of startups and high-growth small business concerns owned and controlled by women; and

(5)

examine the link between women who own small business concerns and intellectual property, including—

(A)

the number of patents, trademarks, and copyrights granted to women; and

(B)

the challenges faced by high-growth small business concerns owned and controlled by women in obtaining and enforcing intellectual property rights.

(d)

Powers

(1)

Hearings

The Task Force may hold such hearings, sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, and receive such evidence as the Task Force considers advisable to carry out its duties.

(2)

Task groups

The Task Force may, from time to time, establish temporary task groups, as necessary to carry out the duties of the Task Force.

(3)

Information from Federal agencies

Upon request of the Chairperson of the Task Force, the head of any Federal department or agency shall furnish such information to the Task Force as the Task Force considers necessary to carry out its duties.

(4)

Use of mails

The Task Force may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as Federal departments and agencies.

(5)

Gifts

The Task Force may accept, use, and dispose of gifts or donations of services or property.

(e)

Meetings

(1)

In general

The Task Force shall meet—

(A)

not less than 3 times each year;

(B)

at the call of the Chairperson; and

(C)

upon the request of—

(i)

the Administrator;

(ii)

the Chairperson and Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate; or

(iii)

the Chairperson and Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives.

(2)

Participation of Federal agencies

(A)

Participation encouraged

The Task Force shall allow and encourage participation in meetings by representatives from Federal agencies.

(B)

Functions of representatives of Federal agencies

A representative from a Federal agency—

(i)

may be used as a resource; and

(ii)

may not vote or otherwise act as a member of the Task Force.

(3)

Location

Each meeting of the full Task Force shall be held at the headquarters of the Administration, unless, not later than 1 month before the meeting, a majority of the members of the Task Force agree to meet at another location.

(4)

Support by Administrator

The Administrator shall provide suitable meeting facilities and such administrative support as may be necessary for each full meeting of the Task Force.

(f)

Reports

(1)

Reports by Task Force

(A)

Reports required

Not later than 30 days after the end of each fiscal year, the Task Force shall submit to the President and to the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate and the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives, a report containing—

(i)

a detailed description of the activities of the Task Force, including a report on how the Task Force has carried out the duties described in subsection (c);

(ii)

the findings and recommendations of the Task Force; and

(iii)

the recommendations of the Task Force for—

(I)

promoting intellectual property rights for high-growth small business concerns owned and controlled by women; and

(II)

such legislative and administrative actions as the Task Force considers appropriate to promote the formation and development of small business concerns owned and controlled by women.

(B)

Form of reports

The report required under subparagraph (A) shall include—

(i)

any concurring or dissenting views of the Administrator; and

(ii)

the minutes of each meeting of the Task Force.

(2)

Reports by Chief Counsel for Advocacy

(A)

Studies

(i)

In general

Not less frequently than twice each year, the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Task Force, shall conduct a study of an issue that is important to small business concerns owned and controlled by women.

(ii)

Topics

The topic of a study under clause (i) shall—

(I)

be an issue that the Task Force determines is critical to furthering the interests of small business concerns owned and controlled by women; and

(II)

relate to—

(aa)

Federal prime contracts and subcontracts awarded to small business concerns owned and controlled by women;

(bb)

access to credit and investment capital by women entrepreneurs;

(cc)

acquiring and enforcing intellectual property rights; or

(dd)

any other issue relating to small business concerns owned and controlled by women that the Task Force determines is appropriate.

(iii)

Contracting

In conducting a study under this subparagraph, the Chief Counsel may contract with a public or private entity.

(B)

Report

The Chief Counsel for Advocacy shall—

(i)

submit a report containing the results of each study under subparagraph (A) to the Task Force, the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate, and the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives; and

(ii)

make each report submitted under clause (i) available to the public online.

(g)

Federal Advisory Committee Act

Section 14 of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) shall not apply to the Task Force.

4.

Repeal

(a)

Final reports

Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act—

(1)

the Interagency Committee on Women's Business Enterprise shall submit to the President and the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate and the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives a report containing the information described in paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of section 404 of the Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 7104), as in effect on the day before the date of enactment of this Act; and

(2)

the National Women's Business Council shall submit to the President and the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship of the Senate and the Committee on Small Business of the House of Representatives a report containing the information described in subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C) of section 406(d)(6) of the Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 7106), as in effect on the day before the date of enactment of this Act.

(b)

Repeal

The Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 631 note) is amended by striking title IV (15 U.S.C. 7101 et seq.).

(c)

Technical and conforming amendments

The Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 631 et seq.) is amended—

(1)

in section 8(b)(1)(G) (15 U.S.C. 637(b)(1)(G)), by striking and to carry out the activities authorized by title IV of the Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988; and

(2)

in section 29(g) (15 U.S.C. 656(g))—

(A)

in paragraph (1), by striking women's business enterprises (as defined in section 408 of the Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 631 note)) and inserting small business concerns owned and controlled by women; and

(B)

in paragraph (2)(B)(ii)—

(i)

in subclause (VI), by adding and at the end;

(ii)

in subclause (VII), by striking the semicolon at the end and inserting a period; and

(iii)

by striking subclauses (VIII), (IX), and (X).

(d)

Effective date

The amendments made by subsections (b) and (c) shall take effect 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act.