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BOSTON — Today, the Baker-Polito Administration is celebrating Small Business Weekend in Massachusetts with an official proclamation to highlight the important role our small businesses play in the Commonwealth and urge residents and visitors to support their local economy this holiday season.
“Our local retailers and small businesses are critical to Massachusetts small towns and major cities,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Shopping local helps build our local economies and support the businesses who employ 1.4 million Massachusetts residents."
“We encourage families across Massachusetts to support their local retailers as the holiday season begins,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “Our small businesses drive regional growth and bring unique, local offerings to our Commonwealth. We’re proud to highlight this integral part of our economy.”
For every dollar spent locally $0.68 stays local, compared to just $0.43 spent at national retailers. The Retail Association of Massachusetts (RAM) has initiated a #BuyInMA social media campaign to remind residents to shop local. Massachusetts Small Business Weekend also runs alongside Small Business Saturday, an annual campaign by American Express and the U.S. Small Business Association.
“Main Streets and small shopping districts in our cities and towns are of the heart of the Massachusetts economy,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash. “When our small businesses prosper, they create more jobs, build economic success and offer new opportunities to burgeoning and long-standing industries here in Massachusetts.”
According to RAM, consumer spending represents 70% of the economy. The holiday sales season historically represents on average 20% of annual retail sales, with some stores seeing 25-30% of their sales during the period.
“By shopping in Massachusetts this holiday season, we support local businesses and their employees, while also generating tax revenue in communities across the Commonwealth,” said Assistant Secretary of Business Development and International Trade Nam Pham.
Small businesses in Massachusetts employ more than 1.4 million residents, representing 46.4% of all Massachusetts employees. The more than 620,000 small firms in Massachusetts include 136,000 firms that employ at least one person, and an additional 484,000 non-employer firms. The majority of our small employers employ less than 20 individuals.
In May of 2017, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development undertook ten listening sessions across the Commonwealth to better understand the needs of small businesses and obstacles to success. More than 600 residents, representing 250 small businesses, which included brewers, manufacturers, health care providers, developers, and retailers attended these listening sessions.
Whereas Since the founding of the Republic, the genius of the American economy has been its potential to inspire men and women, regardless of their station or title, with the ambition made possible by free enterprise; and
Whereas There is no doubt that Americans in small business, numbering in the millions, are making possible advances, cures, inventions and services that will move the United States forward, resulting in happier, healthier, wealthier and greater citizens; and
Whereas All of those small businesses in their varying capacities combine to produce half of the nation’s wealth and more than half of the jobs by which tens of millions of Americans support themselves, shelter themselves, raise their families and secure their own futures; and
Whereas The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is home to hundreds of thousands of those small businesses, and for that its people are richer, more fortunate and better able to care for each other; and
Whereas Nowhere is the value of small business higher than in the cities and towns where every civic organization, every charity, every religious organization and every recreational activity for children is proudly and unreservedly sponsored by the men and women in local business; and
Whereas At no time has it been more important for the people of the Commonwealth to recognize the vital contributions of small businesses to their communities and show their reciprocal support by shopping locally,
Now, Therefore, I, Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim the weekend of November 26th to the 27th, 2017, to be,
Small Business Weekend
And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.
Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this First Day of November, in the year two thousand and seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and forty-first.
By His Excellency
Charles D. Baker
Governor of the Commonwealth
Karyn E. Polito
Lt. Governor of the Commonwealth
William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth