Snowe, Shaheen hear from small business owners

Posted Aug. 12, 2009, at 3:50 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — Sens. Olympia Snowe of Maine and Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire convened a pair of hearings in their home states to learn from small business owners about the successes and failures of the federal government’s response to the recession.

Snowe is also convening a third hearing at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Richard Dyke Center for Family Business at Husson University in Bangor.

Small Business Administration chief Karen Mills was among those testifying at the field hearings Wednesday in Portland, Maine, and Portsmouth, N.H.

Snowe said on Wednesday there’s no greater priority than helping small businesses recoup nearly 20,000 jobs lost in Maine and more than 23,000 jobs lost in New Hampshire over the last year.

The senators are members of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. Snowe is the panel’s ranking Republican.