Small businesses in NY could get more help under new laws

Originally published in Spectrum News

A pair of bills meant to provide more support to small businesses were signed into law by Gov. Kathy Hochul, her office on Thursday announced. 

The bills come as the COVID-19 pandemic has upended the economy, especially for small businesses and deep uncertainty remains. Both bills are meant to provide more support from state agencies for small businesses. 

"After helping my mom start a flower shop, I know how much hard work and dedication it takes to operate a small business," Hochul said. "Small businesses have been hit hard over the past two years, and New York must do everything in our power to help them survive - and thrive. This legislative package will ensure State government can continue to be a partner and an advocate for small businesses across New York."

One bill would create a small business liaison with the Departments of Agriculture and Markets, Environmental Conservation, Labor, Transportation and Taxation and Finance. This person will be tasked with aiding small businesses in their interactions with the agencies and serve as a primary point of contact. 

"Small businesses have it hard enough as it is, so as a government, we need to do as much as we can to make life easier for them, and help them to access all the vital programs and services that are available," said Sen. Anna Kaplan. "By creating small business liaisons within State agencies, and providing every new business with a list of resources available to them, we can help small business owners to better navigate bureaucracy, and have the best chance at success."

The second bill requires the New York secretary of state to confirm receiving a receipt after a statement of filing. The measure is meant to provide small businesses with contacts for support programs offered by the state. 

"The development of new businesses is vital for the state's economy and New York has many remarkable resources available for start-up companies. As the chair of the Assembly Small Business Committee, I know that businesses often need the most support during their first stages," said Assemblyman Al Stirpe. "This new law will allow for crucial contact information including but not limited to the regional NYS Small Business Development Center, regional NYS Entrepreneurship Assistance Center, Business Mentor NY, and NYS Empire State Development to be sent directly to new businesses; helping ensure New York's incredible business development programs are utilized to the fullest. I want to thank Gov. Hochul for signing this bill into law."