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Braintree officials host small-business resource night next Tuesday

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  August 23, 2013 04:15 PM

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Small businesses in the South Shore are about to get a boost from local officials with a Small Business Resource Night next Tuesday at Braintree's Thayer Public Library.

The event, sponsored by the Braintree Chamber of Commerce and Town Councilor Sean Powers, will help familiarize locals with small business-related federal programs.

“We are having reps from the Small Business Administration come to the library and basically explain and give out information on the various federal programs that are available to small businesses and entrepreneurs,” Powers said.

Business owners have several options when it comes to federal grants and the use of federal programs, from counseling program SCORE, to Small Business Development Centers, to Women’s Business Centers, and loan guaranty programs.

According to Powers, the federal government also has programs directed towards veterans, which help returning soldiers start and maintain their small businesses.

“We thought it’s an opportunity, Powers said. “Obviously navigating the federal government can be challenging at times. It’s a very large bureaucracy, we just wanted to, we thought this was a good idea as a resource for our small businesses.”

Powers was unsure how large of a turnout the event would have, but noted the event already has several RSVPS.

“It’s open to anyone,” Powers said. “It’s open to the general public, [but] we teamed up with the Braintree chamber to gear it towards Braintree-based businesses, since the workshop is being held in Braintree.”

“The Braintree Chamber of Commerce is proud to be a sponsor of this event,” Braintree Chamber of Commerce President Mike Wilcox said in a release. “The information provided will be a great resource to any small business in the Braintree area and is part of the Braintree’s Chamber’s mission to assist businesses and help them grow.”

Beyond helping businesses navigate these federal programs, Powers said another goal of the evening would be to inform small businesses that this types of help even exists.

Many businesses do not use the programs at all, “which is why we’re hoping to spread the word through this outreach,” Powers said.

The health of small businesses is something everyone in the community should be concerned about, Powers said, as they not only help to define a community, but are often the first to give back.

“The majority of the money that’s raised for any charity or any organization, and I can speak first hand as chair of the Fourth of July Committee, the majority of the funds donated from businesses are small businesses that have been in town for a long period of time,” Powers said. “It’s a lot easier for a charity group to get a donation, such as a gift card or something donated from a small business than it is through a corporate retailer or corporate business.”

The majority of new jobs also come from small businesses, Powers said.

“Those are the folks you want in your town or in your city. They live nearby, work nearby; they take ownership of something that is part of the town,” Powers said

The program will take place at the Thayer Public Library from 6 to 8 p.m. on Aug. 27. To RSVP, email councilorpowers@gmail.com.


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