This report compiles findings from focus groups and roundtable discussions with rural small business owners and other small business stakeholders in four states, as well as the results of a national poll of rural small business owners. The report also features recommendations for policymakers and service providers to increase opportunities for rural entrepreneurs.
Small business owners are strongly opposed to the FCC’s recent move to repeal rules enforcing net neutrality, according to recent scientific opinion polling. Specifically, the poll found that 56% of small business owners oppose the repeal of the rules, with nearly 4 in 10 (39%) strongly opposed.
As small business owners prepare to close the books on 2012, our country is fast approaching the edge of what’s been dubbed the “fiscal cliff.” This critical situation—created by a host of tax cuts set to expire at the end of 2012, coupled with billions of dollars in automatic spending cuts that will be triggered if Congress and the president can’t agree on a way to reduce the deficit by year’s end—has dire consequences for small businesses. Many of the tax provisions set to expire benefit small businesses and the middle class, small businesses’ core customer base.
New scientific opinion polling found small business owners believe investing in infrastructure is important to their business, and they feel the federal government should play a significant role in funding infrastructure projects. Additionally, small business owners strongly support high-speed broadband infrastructure projects, especially in rural areas.
Technology has transformed the way small companies do business, and while this has helped small businesses and entrepreneurs access more customers and new markets in new ways, it’s essential that we talk about the risks associated with moving business online. The rise of new technology can lead to severe security issues, and unfortunately many small businesses are unaware of measures they can take to help ensure the security of their and their customers’ information. That’s why we’re sharing tips and resources for small businesses during October’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.
Elizabeth James has a soft spot for small businesses.
“I understand that the small businesses of this country are not only a place to work, but are the culmination of someone's dreams and aspirations,” she says. Elizabeth’s family owned businesses and she attended University of California’s School of Business, so starting her own company seemed like a no-brainer. After garnering a unique expertise in tax and controller services, Elizabeth decided to open up her own bookkeeping and tax prep firm, Rincon Controller and Tax Services, Inc., in 2012 in Carpinteria, Calif.
Elizabeth says, “I realized that small businesses need the services and guidance that are available to larger companies, but often beyond small business' pocket books. Tax and controller services in particular are typically exclusive corporations, and I wanted to change that.”
What started as a chance encounter between two community-minded engineers at a conference blossomed into a lasting partnership and an innovative small business focused on public engagement and environmental planning.
Nspiregreen, the brainchild of business partners Veronica Davis and Chancee Lundy, is a Washington, D.C.-based environmental and urban planning consulting firm.
Small Business Majority CEO John Arensmeyer
Some work has been done recently to address tax loopholes for large corporations, such as the notorious corporate tax inversions, which put small businesses at a disadvantage, but more needs to be done to help level the playing field for small businesses.
Karen Mills, former SBA Administrator, just posted a terrific blog about the importance of greater investment in America’s infrastructure to small businesses and entrepreneurs.
Ms. Mills’ remarks, presented at the 2014 America on the Move Summit at Harvard Business School, outline how investments in infrastructure will help businesses grow in the present while keeping them competitive for the future.