Senate Considers Bills to Protect Consumers, Small Business

Mike Brownfield /

The Senate is looking to do some more spending with a vote today on the Economic Development Revitalization Act, which will cost $1.5 billion through 2016 and an additional $760 million thereafter. The goal? Reauthorize funding for the Economic Development Administration — a vehicle for political pet projects, masked as a program that purports to give financial aid to economically distressed areas.

While the bill is more unsavory spending from an already bloated government, two proposed amendments are worth mentioning: Sen. Olympia Snowe’s “Freedom Act,” which targets burdensome federal regulations; and Sen. Jon Tester’s amendment to delay for six months Federal Reserve-mandated caps on debit card “swipe” fees set by Visa and Mastercard. (more…)