AUGUSTA (AP) — Maine’s two U.S. senators are co-sponsoring a bill that’s intended to make it easier to attract businesses and create new jobs in areas around closed military bases.

The bill sponsored by Republican Susan Collins and independent Angus King seeks to expand the geographic boundaries of so-called HUBzones located at former U.S. military installations that have been closed through the Base Clo- sure and Realignment, or BRAC process.

HUBzones, or Historically Underutilized Business Zones, help small businesses in specified areas gain preferential access to federal procurement opportunities. At least one company that could create more than 200 jobs could locate near the Brunswick Naval Air Station if the HUBzone program is expanded.

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