Good News for Veterans Starting a Small Business

Good News for Veterans Starting a Small Business

March 03, 2015

Good News for Veterans Starting a Small Business

A new proposal could help veterans starting a small business. The change has to do with post-9/11 G.I. Bill which gives veterans benefits for a college education. Now, two men are working to make a change to those benefits which would allow veterans to use the funds to start a small business.

C. Lynn Lowder, a retired major who was a Force Reconnaissance Marine in Vietnam, and Marine Lt. Col. Joe Plenzler are the two men with the idea to allow veterans to use their education benefits as collateral for a small business loan. Currently, it is estimated that about 40% of the current generation of veterans don't ever use their post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits. Instead, many begin a job search or have ideas to start a business. Unfortunately, veterans have a hard time finding someone to give them a loan to start that business.

How much money would their education benefit be worth? An estimation from Lowder and Plenzler would be somewhere around $186,000. That number comes from the cost of tuition, housing and books the government would pay for a veteran to go to college for four years.

Under the two men's proposal, veterans would not just automatically gain access to those funds. First, the veteran would need to put together a business plan which be vetted and approved by an independent board of business experts. Second, the veteran must attend a boots-to-business course at an accredited university.

After meeting those two requirements, the veteran would then apply for the small business loan which would be a 10-year no-interest loan. According to some sources, the two men's proposal is getting noticed in Washington. In fact, some are saying that it may be introduced in Congress in this current session.

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