Mainers are resilient. Along with the rest of the country, however, too many Mainers continue to struggle in this tough economy. Senator Collins believes that putting people back to work is the key to improving our economic recovery and should remain our number one goal. With this goal in mind, Senator Collins has offered or supported legislation aimed at providing tax relief, cutting red tape, and investing in a 21st century workforce.

Following Pressure from Collins & King, DHS & Labor Departments to Issue 15,000 H-2B Visas to Support American Jobs

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King today welcomed an announcement from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that the Departments of Labor and Homeland Security will issue up to 15,000 additional H-2B visas for U.S. businesses to hire temporary workers. Senators Collins and King had repeatedly pressed both Departments and USCIS to increase the visa cap so that Maine businesses would be able to hire additional temporary employees to help their businesses operate during the busy summer tourist season.



Funding for Important Infrastructure Project at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Clears Key Hurdle

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Susan Collins announced today that the Senate Appropriations Committee on which she serves approved $61.7 million in funding for a paint, blast, and rubber fabrication facility at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (PNSY) in Kittery. The funding was included in the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill at her request. 


Collins, King, Pingree, Poliquin Announce USDA Approval of up to $10 million in Bonus Buy of Maine Wild Blueberries After Delegation’s Request

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Representatives Chellie Pingree and Bruce Poliquin announced today that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved up to $10 million to purchase Maine wild blueberries after the Delegation requested the Department take action earlier this year. Bonus buys help protect American farmers from unexpected market conditions by purchasing surplus goods and distributing them to food banks and other charitable institutions.


Collins, King Again Call on Administration to Approve Additional Seasonal H-2B Visas

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King have signed onto a bipartisan letter led by Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.) to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary John Kelly urging him to use the authority provided by Congress to lift the cap on seasonal H-2B visas that employers rely on to fill summer jobs. In the letter, the senators expressed their concern about reports that visas may not be approved in time for peak tourist season. 



Following Effort from Senators Collins, Klobuchar, and Heitkamp, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will Resume Premium Processing for Doctors Participating in the Conrad 30 Program that Helps Rural America

Washington, D.C. - Following an effort from U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) today will resume premium processing for all H-1B petitions filed for medical doctors under the Conrad 30 Waiver program, as well as interested government agency waivers. The Conrad 30 program helps address physician shortages by allowing doctors to stay in the United States in exchange for practicing in underserved areas, such as rural communities.


Collins, King Announce $210,000 in Grant Funding for Economic Development in Rural Maine

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King today announced that the U.S. Economic Development Administration has awarded three grants totaling $210,000 to support economic development and planning for parts of rural Maine. Eastern Maine Development Corporation, Kennebec Valley Council of Governments, and Northern Maine Development Commission, Inc. will each receive $70,000.



Senator Collins Introduces Legislation to Protect Community Banks

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Susan Collins introduced the Community Bank Sensible Regulation Act of 2017, legislation that would allow financial regulators to exempt small community banks from unnecessary and burdensome requirements. Her bill would protect small financial institutions from highly complex regulations that are intended for larger banks whose failure would risk the collapse of the financial system.


Collins, King Introduce Bill to Ease Regulatory Burdens on Maine’s Sea Urchin Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King today introduced legislation that would make it easier for Maine seafood dealers to export sea urchins and sea cucumbers outside of the United States. The legislation, which also has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Congressman Bruce Poliquin, would put an end to repetitive, mandatory inspections of urchins and sea cucumbers exported from the country.


Collins, Peters Introduce Bill to Give Fire Departments Flexibility in Hiring

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Gary Peters (D-MI) introduced bipartisan legislation today to help local fire departments across the country save money and hire and promote trained first responders. The Firefighters Retention Act of 2017 will give fire departments flexibility to use Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants to transition part-time or paid-on-call personnel to full-time status.


Senator Collins Announces $6 Million to Support Safety Training Grants for Fishermen

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Susan Collins announced today that the fiscal year 2017 funding bill that was signed into law last week contains $6 million to initiate two grant programs to support safety for fishermen. Senator Collins, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, championed the effort to ensure the Fishing Safety Training Grant Program and the Fishing Safety Research Grant Program receive funding.


Senators Collins, Peters Introduce Bill to Help Small Businesses Applying for Federal Contracts

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Gary Peters (D-MI) introduced bipartisan legislation to help protect small businesses from falling victim to fraud when they register to procure federal contracts. The Procurement Fraud Prevention Act would require small businesses to be notified that free assistance is available for help in procuring federal contracts through federal programs, including Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs), the Small Business Administration (SBA), and the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA).


Tax Fairness for Small Businesses: Supporting Our Nation’s Job Creators

By: Senator Susan M. Collins

Small businesses are our nation’s job creators. According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses employ more than half of all American workers and have generated two-out-of-three net new jobs since the 1970s.

Maine truly is a small business state, with nearly 300,000 of our residents employed by our more than 141,000 small businesses. That’s nearly 60 percent of our workforce.



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