Schatz, Cornyn Introduce Bipartisan Bill To Support Creative Workers, Small Businesses, Grow American Economy

Press Release

Date: Jan. 12, 2022
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawai"i) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) today introduced the Comprehensive Resources for Entrepreneurs in the Arts to Transform the Economy Act (CREATE) Act. The bipartisan legislation will support small businesses in creative industries by increasing access to federal resources to help them grow.

"Local artists, writers, performers, and the creative industry they support play a leading role in our economy and our everyday lives. As the creative economy begins to rebuild from the pandemic, we have an opportunity to make key federal investments that will create new jobs and help the industry reach its full potential," said Senator Schatz.

"The world knows about the Lone Star State and our rich culture thanks to the creative Texans who have chronicled our way of life for hundreds of years," said Senator Cornyn. "This legislation would support the Texas writers, singers, artists, and arts entrepreneurs whose work helps drive our economy."

The creative economy includes businesses focused on individual creativity, skill, talent, or expression of indigenous culture or regional or local heritage culture. These businesses collectively add $919.7 billion annually to our nation's Gross Domestic Product, with a growth rate nearly double the rest of the economy.

The recent growth of the creative economy has occurred despite federal small business and economic development policies largely ignoring the needs of the industry. The CREATE Act will offer direct, concrete support to these businesses. Specifically, the CREATE Act:

Expands the Microloan Program qualifications to include artists and arts entrepreneurs, or small businesses, that support the creative economy;
Provides support to state, regional, and local art agencies, artists, and creative workers through traditional economic development tools;
Directs the Small Business Administration (SBA) to develop procedures on evaluating the business proposals and plans of non-employer business and small businesses within the creative economy;
Tasks the SBA with partnering with relevant stakeholders to develop a technical assistance program that targets the specific needs of artists and arts entrepreneurs; and
Establishes a program to examine helping local arts agencies and nonprofits with planning grants.