LA small businesses say help needed from D.C.

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By Carol A. Clark

Local business people shared bottom-line concerns with U.S. Sen. Tom Udall during a Chamber Coffee event at Fuller Lodge Tuesday.
“More than anything, I just want to hear from everybody,” Udall said. “We’re very; very interested in the small business situation here. One of the things we want to do is get money into the hands of community banks.”
The banking and mortgage loan crisis that has plagued the nation for the last three years has led to stiffer regulations.
CEO Bill Enloe of Los Alamos National Bank told Udall that those regulations are making things difficult for community banks —  especially banks in rural communities.
“The new regulations were imposed in part to limit risks to banks, but the effect on community banks is that it makes it difficult to raise capital — if you’re shrinking capital ­ you’re shrinking loans,” Enloe said.
He also said new regulations limit concentrations of credit in any one industry or region. In the Southwest most banks are already over those limits. The net effect, he said, is for banks to stop giving loans.
“What’s the fix?” Udall asked.