Clinton Signs Law Expanding Business Aid

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BEFORE leaving for the Middle East, President Clinton signed legislation Tuesday to help the Small Business Administration expand its business-creating programs in the United States and promote US trade.

Clinton said the new law will:

* Enable the SBA to expand its micro-loan program in poor communities.

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* Allow the SBA to match its export loan program with that of the Export-Import Bank to help expand trade.

* Place new emphasis on helping women business owners, who Clinton said ``are now creating businesses at a faster pace than their male counterparts.''

* Provide relief from high pre-payment penalties and allows refinancing of loans at more favorable interest rates. Stepping in, Gore slams GOP

WITH the president overseas, Vice President Al Gore stepped up and launched a blistering attack on Republicans he said were ``determined to wreck Congress in order to control it, and then to wreck a presidency in order to recapture it.''

Urging Americans to rethink their votes two weeks before Election Day, Gore on Tuesday labeled Republicans advocates of ``isolationism and defeatism'' abroad and of a ``reckless strategy of partisan paralysis'' at home.

He chastised by name several GOP leaders and a handful of Republican candidates in close Senate races, saying their campaign platform would result in giant tax breaks for the wealthy and massive cuts in federal programs.

Food industry balks at new labels

JUST months after the government trumpeted new food labels designed to end confusion over what constitutes a healthy diet, the food industry wants to change the rules.

The National Food Processors Association petitioned the government Tuesday to allow more foods to make claims about their ability to prevent disease. The trade group wants to change the wording it has to use to describe a food's health benefits and the nutrient levels.

If the FDA won't change the requirements, the association promised to take the issue to Congress next year - noting that dietary supplement-makers just won some congressional relief from similar FDA rules.

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