NDAA includes grant/loan programs for CNMI businesses

Businesses in the CNMI would have new access to two grant programs and microloans from the Small Business Administration as the result of statutory changes incorporated into the National Defense Authorization this week.

Rep. Gregorio Sablan , the CNMI's delegate to the U.S. Congress, amended the annual defense bill with his own Northern Mariana Islands Small Business Act, H.R. 2603, during floor debate on Monday and the House passed the Defense Act the following day.

The Northern Mariana Islands Small Business Act will allow the Marianas to establish a Lead Small Business Development Center, which would make available around $600,000 in renewable funding to expand the reach and capacity of the existing SBDC service center on Saipan.