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B&I Lending Weekly Update

Recap of the 2017 National Rural Lenders’ Roundtable Event on December 7t h in DC

The Farm Bill and Rural Development Lending
We would like to thank everyone for attending the 2017 Annual National Rural Lenders’
Roundtable on Thursday, December 7th in Washington! We had a record turnout, with over 75 attendees this year. Congressman Sanford Bishop, Keynote Speaker and Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, addressed the Roundtable’s members and spoke of his passion of getting capital to rural America’s Main Street. He praised USDA’s rural lending programs and thanked rural lenders for their support.

He discussed the Farm Bill -- every five years Congress writes a new Farm Bill with the next one beginning on October 1, 2018.

As Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Congressman Bishop will be a major influence in writing the new Farm Bill.

All of USDA’s Rural Development loan programs are governed by the Farm Bill, thus the National Rural Lenders’ Roundtable has been lobbying for the following changes in the 2018 Farm Bill:

1) Revert to a zero credit subsidy for all programs by no later than 2020. This should do away with a minimum of $50 Million in annual subsidies from the Treasury.

2) Like FSA and SBA, we want the Agency to have a preferred lender program whereby those lenders with a good track record and low losses would be able to approve Rural Development loans on their own.

3) All programs should delegate, like other government agencies, all environmental studies to be approved by the lender and their designated third reviewers.

4) We are asking that the Agency consider centralizing the loan approval process on a regional basis and automate their loan applications electronically like most other government agencies.

5) Eliminate the Tangible Balance Sheet Equity requirement in the USDA B&I Loan Program.

6) Allow the Community Facilities Loan Program to guarantee the construction loan for an additional fee.

Public Private Partnership
Anne Hazlett, luncheon Keynote speaker and Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development, talked to us about how the Administration and Secretary Perdue would like to concentrate on public private partnerships in the upcoming years.

Below are the presentations from the speakers at the event last Thursday:

Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan Program
Kelley Oehler, Director, Business and Industry Division, USDA Rural Development

Community Facilities Loan Program
Joseph Ben-Israel, Acting Deputy Administrator, Community Facilities Loan Program

REAP Energy Program Opportunities
Mark Brodziski, Deputy Administrator, Energy Programs, USDA Rural Development

Borrower of the Year
Phanesh Koneru, Ph.D., LL.M., Founder, President and CEO, Exela Pharma Sciences, LLC

SBA Export Loan Programs
Bill Houck, Regional Manager, (MD,VA,DC,WV) US Export Assistance Center

Top 10 Secondary Market Takeaways
Vasu Srinivasan, President and CEO,Thomas USAF Group

Appropriations Issues and Farm Bill Goals
Bill Broydrick, Principal, Broydrick and Associates