News Releases

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.), along with Senators Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), recently introduced the Startup Act – bipartisan jobs legislation to encourage creation and growth of new business. The Startup Act has received praise from businesses, universities and foundations, including the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Sprint Corporation, Kansas State University and the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. Statements in support of the Startup Act are included below.

Jason Wiens, Director of Policy, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation:

“Too many have been left out of our economy. There’s a connection between the long-term decline in entrepreneurship and the effect on productivity, growth and wages. Put simply, fewer startups means a lower quality of life for all Americans. We need more startups, fast. Based on research, we know that skilled immigrants are more likely than native-born to start new business that hire Americans. Job creation, innovation and overall quality of life for all Americans would receive a boost by increasing the numbers of entrepreneurs in our nation, whether American or foreign-born.”

Sprint Corporation:

“Sprint commends Senators Moran and Warner for their leadership to retain foreign students in the STEM fields with the introduction of the Startup Act. It is critical for American competitiveness that we have the ability to attract and retain top talent from around the world. We look forward to working with the Senate in advancing this important legislation.”

Kansas City Chamber of Commerce:

“The Kansas City Chamber is very supportive of the Startup Act as a valuable initiative to help reduce many barriers for these small business owners who are key to future growth of our economy. Our members have seen firsthand the power of progressive policy to encourage reduce barriers to growth and support opportunities to advance investment in small business. Thank you to Senator Moran and your team for continuing to fight for these commonsense measures to help businesses grow and allow foreign born entrepreneurs to build businesses, create jobs and contribute to the nation’s economy.”

Kent Glasscock, President, Kansas State University, Institute for Commercialization:

“It was with great pleasure that I learned of your plan to reintroduce the Start-Up Act legislation. As our university’s commercialization/economic development/corporate engagement entity, the Kansas State University Institute for Commercialization is daily engaged with entrepreneurs, entrepreneurial faculty and students, emerging companies and mature, established companies. As we strive at K-State to increase the velocity science and technology from our $180MM research enterprise into the global marketplace, we face great opportunities and challenges. Once again, Senator Moran, let me express my excitement and support of the Start-Up Act reintroduction. You continue to be a national leader in this very important arena.”

George Hansen, President & CEO, Enterprise Center of Johnson County:

“In order to foster an environment of innovation, the [Startup] Act needs to be approved. This act needs to be implemented so that the trend of creating new jobs through companies that are less than five years old continues. Research shows that entrepreneurs and their new business create an average of three million jobs per year.”

Engine, the Voice of Startups in Government:

“Engine has long supported the Startup Act, since its first introduction in 2011, and we’re excited to support the newest iteration of the bill. The bill would open up opportunities for entrepreneurs and U.S.-educated foreign students with graduate degrees in the STEM fields, remove per-country caps for employment-based visas, encourage university research to move to the market more quickly, and require agencies to evaluate the costs of new significant regulations to startups. This year’s version of the bill also includes a crucial new provision that would modernize the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Regional Innovation Program. That program – which awards grants for innovative job-creating programs at the local and regional level and has seen decreased funding in recent years – would be restored to its original authorization level of $100 million and would be made available to more programs. Legislation that contains forward thinking immigration policies, research policies, and federal funding programs like this bill will help boost the U.S. startup ecosystem while adding jobs and economic growth. We thank Sens. Moran and Warner for their tireless work on these issues and hope Congress will move quickly on this measure.”

John R. Dearie, President, Center for American Entrepreneurship (CAE):

“The Center for American Entrepreneurship (CAE) applauds the re-introduction of the Start-up Act, important legislation that addresses one of the most urgent policy challenges confronting the nation – a significant and prolonged decline in American entrepreneurship. Given the critical role that start-ups play as the principal source of innovation, productivity gains, economic growth, and job creation, such circumstances amount to nothing short of a national emergency. Addressing that emergency by reversing the three-decade decline in American entrepreneurship requires changes in public policy. The Start-up Act, S.1877, would accelerate the commercialization of university research that can lead to new ventures, review and improve the regulatory processes at the federal, state, and local levels, and modernize a critical Economic Development Administration (EDA) program to promote innovation and spur economic growth. The legislation also creates both Entrepreneur and STEM visas for highly-educated individuals so they can remain in the United States legally to promote new ideas, launch new businesses, and create American jobs. CAE thanks co-sponsoring Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) for their leadership. We look forward to working with the Senators, their Congressional colleagues, and the Administration to see the provisions of the Start-up Act enacted into law.”

Dean Garfield, President & CEO, Information Technology Industry Council (ITI):

“The Startup Act would help to create jobs, encourage entrepreneurship, and attract high-skilled, foreign-born innovators to work hand-in-hand with American businesses and technology companies. We are not doing enough as a country to support innovators that drive our economic engine and ensure global competitiveness. This bill would help to address that challenge in many ways, including lifting per-country caps for green cards and creating a new visa for foreign students who graduate from an American university with an advanced STEM degree. We commend Senators Moran, Warner, Blunt, and Klobuchar for their leadership on this issue and once again support his efforts.”

Gary Shapiro, President & CEO, Consumer Technology Association (CTA):

“We thank Sens. Jerry Moran (R-KS), Mark Warner (D-VA), Roy Blunt (R- MO) and Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) for reintroducing the Startup Act. Without talented and bright immigrants, we wouldn't have many of the innovations we enjoy today or the 44 immigrant-founded billion-dollar startups that employ hundreds of thousands of Americans. The Startup Act recognizes the extraordinary contributions foreign-born entrepreneurs and STEM graduates make to our nation and gives them new visas so they can stay in America to grow their companies and create U.S. jobs. The bill also improves startups’ access to capital and reduces burdensome rules that inhibit investment. We look forward to working with this bipartisan group of Senators to make sure the Startup Act is one of the common sense immigration bills passed into law this Congress.”

Bobby Franklin, President & CEO, National Venture Capital Association (NVCA):

"On behalf of our nation’s venture capital investors and the entrepreneurs with whom they partner, I write in enthusiastic support of the Startup Act. Your continued dedication to promoting entrepreneurship is commendable, and we stand ready to help you advance your legislation. From one Congress to the next, the Startup Act has proven to be an effective platform for advancing pro-startup policy.... The common-sense immigration policies in the Startup Act are desperately needed, given it is easier than ever for top entrepreneurs to start new companies in their home country. Therefore, we must work hard to attract startups to our shores so our country will benefit from high-quality American jobs and innovation. U.S. Census data demonstrates that approximately 25% of U.S. entrepreneurs are immigrants and that 35-40% of all new companies have at least one immigrant entrepreneur connected to its creation. But immigrant entrepreneurs have not met their true potential because of the lack of a reliable immigration category, such as the startup visa created by your legislation. We also support your efforts to create STEM visas to ensure technological and scientific advancements occur in our country, rather than overseas."

Dan Berglund, President & CEO, SSTI:

“Our country has a number of assets that are yet to be taken fully advantage of in the effort to grow regional economies and create jobs. The Startup Act leverages these assets so that more research will get off of laboratory shelves, more entrepreneurs will succeed in creating new businesses and jobs, and we will have a better prepared workforce. I commend Senators Moran and Warner for their leadership in crafting this legislation, which will improve the economy for all Americans.”

Michael Beckerman, President & CEO, Internet Association:

“The internet industry applauds Senators Moran and Warner for their bipartisan leadership in fostering innovation and American jobs and supports the introduction of The Startup Act. This legislation will enable growing businesses in the U.S. to acquire the highly-skilled talent they need to continue succeed and create jobs in America. It will also allow STEM and computer science graduates trained in the U.S. to remain here and contribute to our economy instead of creating jobs and businesses abroad.”

Kelly Cole, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, CTIA:

“CTIA applauds Senators Moran, Warner, Blunt and Klobuchar for introducing the Startup Act to encourage the creation and growth of innovative new businesses. Many of today's startups leverage today’s wireless networks, and the positive impact on our economy and daily life of these startups will be even more significant in a 5G world."

Ed Black, President & CEO, Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA):

"The bill takes important steps toward promoting innovation and a high tech workforce. The bill would create a new visa for foreign students who earn graduate degrees from American universities in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM). There is fierce competition for talent worldwide, so this bill helps American tech companies retain more of the best and brightest students from our own universities to grow new businesses and create jobs in the United States."   

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