Baker-Polito Administration Kicks Off Small Business Month
Engagement sessions to gather feedback on opportunities for further growth and development in small business sector
BOSTON – Today in Worcester, the Baker-Polito Administration officially proclaimed May as Small Business Month and kicked off the first of ten listening sessions focused on engaging small businesses to discuss ways Massachusetts can encourage economic growth and job creation.
“Small businesses account for close to half of our state’s employment and our administration will continue to advance policies and partnerships to support our local economy,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “We welcome this opportunity to further engage the small business community on ideas to drive new growth and job creation.”
Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash joined local leaders and small business stakeholders at Clark University to share resources, hear concerns and present a proclamation recognizing May as Small Business Month. Listening sessions will inform the economic development strategy of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development.
“The contributions of small businesses extend beyond the number of jobs they create and serve as a backbone of every region, downtown and community in Massachusetts,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “We look forward to highlighting existing resources available to small businesses and soliciting further ideas through listening sessions across the state.”
“Last year, Governor Baker signed our Economic Development Bill, which provides up to $1 billion in new investments for our citizens, communities and businesses,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash. “This legislation created a robust set of tools for economic development, and we are looking to create continuous engagement with our small business community to collaborate on how to best support this critical sector of the Massachusetts’ economy.”
“These listening sessions give us the opportunity to discuss the complex issues that our small businesses face, from access to capital to navigating state resources,” said Assistant Secretary for Business Development Nam Pham. “Through conversations with stakeholders and local leaders, we hope to identify the challenges in each region of the Commonwealth and build strategies to expand opportunities for our small businesses.”
The Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and the Office of Business Development will hold ten listening sessions across Massachusetts:
Tuesday, May 2 Kick-off event with Lieutenant Governor Polito
Clark University, Worcester, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Thursday, May 4: Cape Cod with Deputy Secretary Carolyn Kirk
Chatham Community Center, Chatham, MA at 5:30 p.m.
Tuesday, May 9: Western Mass with Secretary Jay Ash
Holyoke Community College, Holyoke, MA at 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, May 10: Berkshire County with Secretary Jay Ash
Berkshire Community College, Pittsfield, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Monday, May 15: Northeast with Deputy Secretary Carolyn Kirk
Salem State University, Salem, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Tuesday, May 16: South Coast with Assistant Secretary Juan Vega
Bristol Community College, Fall River, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Wednesday, May 17: Brockton with Lieutenant Governor Polito
The Conference Center at Massasoit, Brockton, MA at 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday, May 23: MetroWest with Secretary Jay Ash
The Center for Arts Natick (TCAN), Natick, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Thursday, May 25: North Central with Secretary Jay Ash
Mount Wachusett Community College, Gardner, MA at 7:30 a.m.
Wednesday, May 31: Boston
MassChallenge, 21 Drydock Ave, Boston, MA at 5:30 p.m.