For immediate release
Alisa Harrison, 202-628-8000
Matthew Haller, 202-662-0770
WASHINGTON, Sept. 14, 2011-The International Franchise Association today presented Sen. Mary Landrieu (D- LA) and Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO) with its 2011 Legislator of the Year awards at IFA's 12th Annual Public Affairs Conference.
"Sen. Landrieu and Rep. Graves have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to improving the business environment for small businesses and franchising," said IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira. "We applaud their dedication to improving small business access to credit and the small business regulatory environment amidst continued challenging economic conditions for small businesses still struggling from the recession."
IFA's annual Public Affairs Conference gathers more than 500 franchise business leaders in Washington to inform Congress how public policy impacts the economic health of franchise small businesses. Conference attendees will meet with more than 200 lawmakers to stress the economic impact of franchising and its potential to create job growth. Attendees also will be advocating for increasing small business access to credit by asking lawmakers to support a strong Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) loan program, ensuring small businesses have long-term tax certainty and for repeal of onerous provisions in the health care law such as the employer mandate and health insurance tax.
Sen. Landrieu is currently serving her third term in the U.S. Senate. As chair of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, she championed the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, which included provisions that increased the SBA 7(a) loan limits and higher loan guarantee rate, which IFA strongly supported. Sen. Landrieu participated in IFA's Small Business Lending Summit in April that brought together nearly 200 franchising and banking leaders, policymakers and administration officials to identify proactive approaches to collaboration and education to get credit flowing again to the nation's small, franchised businesses
As chairman of the House Small Business Committee, Rep. Graves has correctly focused much of his attention on improving small business access to credit, due to its direct correlation to job creation. Rep. Graves has reiterated IFA's position that access to credit for small businesses is key to improving the economy and creating jobs, and has held numerous hearings to examine the potential negative impact regulations are having on small business owners, including a June 1 hearing at which IFA Credit Access Task Force Chairman Bill Hall, CFE, a multi-unit franchisee of International Dairy Queen testified.
According to a study conducted for the IFA Educational Foundation by PricewaterhouseCoopers on the economic impact of franchising, over 825,000 franchise establishments across 300 business lines provide for nearly 18 million jobs and generate over $2.1 trillion to the U.S. economy. IFA's Public Affairs Conference is supported by Founding and Franchisee of the Year Awards Sponsor ADP Small Business Systems.
For more information about the 12th Annual IFA Public Affairs Conference, click here.
About the International Franchise Association
The International Franchise Association is the world's oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. Celebrating 50 years of excellence, education and advocacy, IFA protects, enhances and promotes franchising through government relations, media relations and educational programs. Through its awareness campaign highlighting the theme, Franchising: Building Local Businesses, One Opportunity at a Time, IFA promotes the nearly 18 million jobs and $2.1 trillion of economic activity generated by franchising. IFA members include franchise companies in over 90 different business format categories, individual franchisees and companies that support the industry in marketing, law and business development.