Assembly Approves Extension of the Self-Employment Assistance Program

June 4, 2007

The New York State Assembly gave final legislative approval to legislation (A.7209/S.4080) extending the Self-Employment Assistance Program until December 7, 2009.

The Self-Employment Assistance Program, which is administered by the N.Y.S. Department of Labor, has been extremely successful in helping individuals who are likely to exhaust their regular unemployment insurance benefits to develop and establish small businesses in New York. SEAP participants receive their unemployment benefits while getting their new enterprise off the ground, even if they earn money through their self-employment. To help make their undertaking a success, participants are required to take state-approved entrepreneurial training and business counseling.

“The success of this program is evident,” said Schimminger. “Thousands of jobs have been created since the program’s inception.”

Qualified individuals participate in a rigorous program that consists of specific benchmarks they must comply with in order to stay in the program. A participant must complete a minimum of 20 hours of entrepreneurial training, meet a minimum of two times with a certified business counselor, create a business plan and send periodic reports to their Department of Labor coordinator.

“The success stories of individuals who participated in the Self-Employment Assistance Program are numerous,” said Assemblyman Schimminger. “Individuals who qualify for the program are assisted in achieving their goal of becoming entrepreneurs and in turn contribute to the economy and job growth of the state.”

The bill now goes to the Governor for his anticipated approval.