Business Updates

July 16, 2021
After an array of outreach from you, I wanted to provide a consistent platform to share helpful resources and information pertaining to small businesses. Every month I will compile a multitude of business-related content that you can access if it applies to you. In this first installment below, you will find links to a number of resources, as well as information regarding a few highlighted bills passed this session that will directly impact businesses.

Remember to also check my Facebook page regularly for similar updates, sign-up for my email list on my webpage, and you may reach me by email at Stephanie.Thomas@cga.ct.gov with any specific questions or issues.

 
Online Business Portal

Last July Connecticut launched an online, one-stop-shop where entrepreneurs can find information and create a checklist with everything required to start up or manage their business in Connecticut. Information about licenses and permits, new hires, change of address, taxes, and forms may all be found by clicking here or the image above.

Some of the features include:

  • Resource Center: Users can access a customizable resource center that centralizes 170 different programs for businesses. These resources pull from multiple sectors and disciplines, providing financial, technical, and equity-based support programs for business owners in any stage of their business lifecycle. Users can receive personalized recommendations for resources based on their business and then save them all into a powerful, tailored collection that stays inside their account.
  • Business Dashboard: When users log in, they will see a new dynamic, content-rich dashboard that will cut down on the time needed to find crucial business information, link companies to state compliance needs, and equip business owners with vital, time-sensitive alerts that can impact their business.

 
CT Small Business Development Center Resources

CTSBDC is offering a number of trainings to help small business owners apply to get their PPP Loans forgiven. Depending on your loan size, you will have the option to join a live training, or view multiple trainings on demand.

If your loan amount is more than $50K, please view CTSBDC's on-demand webinars for sessions specific to your loan amount.

If your loan amount is less than $50K, please join the upcoming webinar on Wednesday, July 21 @ Noon. The webinar will cover:

  • The simplified forgiveness form for loans below $50,000
  • Exemptions on employee and wage reductions
  • The eligible payroll and non-payroll costs
  • Certifications and documentation
View On-Demand Webinars
Register for Live Webinar on July 21
 
Bills Passed in Session

Below are some of the bills we passed during session that directly benefit local businesses:

HB 6121, AN ACT CONCERNING A WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT PIPELINE FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

  • This bill requires the Department of Economic and Community Development to develop a plan to establish a workforce development pipeline for persons with disabilities.
  • Individuals with disabilities face many obstacles in finding gainful employment, one of which is the lack of job opportunities.
  • Businesses, and the economy as a whole, will benefit from persons with disabilities entering the workforce.

SB 1202, AN ACT CONCERNING PROVISIONS RELATED TO REVENUE AND OTHER ITEMS TO IMPLEMENT THE STATE BUDGET FOR THE BIENNIUM ENDING JUNE 30, 2023:

  • This omnibus bill establishes a number of policies, one of which expands and incentivizes the state's Small Business Express (SBE) Program.
    • Establishes new loans and grants for local businesses.
    • Creates new insurance products provided through the SBE program.
  • Implements extensions to SBE to support small businesses, distressed municipalities, and opportunity zones in Connecticut.
    • Enables the state to work with an expanded group of private financial institutions to provide more capital to women and minority-owned businesses.

HB 6603, AN ACT CONCERNING TOURISM

  • This bill allows two or more municipalities in any regional tourism district to jointly appoint one representative to the regional tourism district boards of directors, and requires that a representative of the Connecticut Tourism Coalition be a member of the Connecticut Tourism Council.
  • This will also establish a task-force to study the shortage of employees in tourism-related businesses and allow the State to be better equipped to deal with tourism.

HB 6606, AN ACT CONCERNING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN DISTRESSED MUNICIPALITIES AND THE RENOVATION OF HISTORIC MIXED-USE BUILDINGS

  • This bill requires the Commissioner of Economic and Community Development to study economic development issues affecting distressed municipalities and opportunity zones in the state.
  • The legislation will also establish a task force to study impediments to the renovation of historic mixed-use buildings in the state.

You can find the full list of bills, that either passed or failed out of the Commerce Committee by clicking here.

 
Small Business Roundtable

In response to your requests in my Small Business Survey, I recently hosted two interactive roundtable events with the CT Small Business Development Center to discuss what you said you wanted to know most: how and why to register as a women- and minority-owned business (if applicable), federal grants (where and how to find them), the use and purpose of social media for your small business. If you weren’t able to attend the two-part series, please click here to watch the recording of Part One: Exploring Opportunities for Small Business, and here for the recording of Part Two: Social Media for Small Businesses.