Governor Signs Law to Extend the Self Employment Assistance Program

July 11, 2007

Governor Eliot Spitzer has given approval to a new law, Chapter 200 of the Laws of 2007, that extends the Self Employment Assistance Program until December 7, 2009. Assemblyman Robin Schimminger who sponsored both the bill that originally created the program and the extender, said, “The Self Employment Assistance Program has proven its worth with the thousands of jobs have been created since the program’s inception.”

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.

Qualified individuals participate in a rigorous program that consists of specific benchmarks they must comply with in order to stay in the program. Participants 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 coordinators.

“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.”