March 9, 2009

Assembly Passes Legislative Package To Benefit Small Businesses

Multi-bill package seeks to benefit state's largest employer and encourage new entrepreneurs

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Small Business Committee Chair Mark Weprin today announced, in celebration of tomorrow's Small Business Day, passage of a comprehensive eleven-bill legislative package aimed at helping small businesses be competitive, productive and profitable in New York State.

"Our small business community contributes to the economic vitality of New York State as our number one source of employment. This legislative package aims to not only help our state's small businesses stay competitive in this tough economy, but will also strengthen our state overall," said Silver (D-Manhattan). "Small businesses continue to be the backbone of our economy and provide essential benefits, investments and employment opportunities to communities across our state. The Assembly Majority is committed to making sure these businesses continue to grow, thrive and contribute to the vibrancy of New York's communities."

"Small business is the driving force that fuels New York State's economy. In this package we have taken great steps to ensure small business can remain profitable and successful during this time of economic hardship. I am committed to continuing our work in the Assembly to enhance these businesses by giving them access to resources they need to grow and expand in our state. The more we can do to establish a stronger, more competitive small business environment, the stronger our state will become," said Weprin (D-Queens).

A key goal of the Assembly package is the creation of a micro business outreach center to provide firms that employ less than five employees with the knowledge and tools they need to be competitive. Under the bill (A.3193/Weprin), individuals without access to traditional sources of finance could access the centers for information about business plans, loan programs and how to operate a business.

The Assembly small business measure includes an effort that would address the rising cost of energy to help small businesses become more energy-efficient. The bill would establish zero and low-interest-loan programs for energy improvement projects which could stimulate growth and create more job opportunities (A.3945/Weprin).

Other bills in the Assembly's package would:

Many of the bills devoted to small-business legislation are designed to aid minority- and women-owned businesses. In particular these measures would: