Pa. weighs plan to streamline business loan process

A bill with backing from Gov. Tom Corbett would make it easier for companies to get state loans to grow in Pennsylvania.

A bill pending in the Pennsylvania Legislature would combine state aid programs for businesses to create the Liberty Financing Authority, making it easier for businesses to apply for state loans. That’s welcomed by local agencies that steer businesses to state programs.

However, the consolidation plan has not been embraced universally.”It’s better than the status quo  because it is simplifying those programs and simplifying government; but on the other hand, we think these are a lot of programs that really should be eliminated altogether and get government out of borrowing money for corporate welfare,” says Nathan Benefield of the Commonwealth Foundation, a conservative think tank.Supporters say having loan programs is not optional. Pennsylvania needs incentives to compete for business against other states. None of the state programs that give outright grants to companies would be included in this program. Companies will still need to apply for those funds separately.

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