SBA National Small Business Week Focus Builds a Better America

The Small Business Administration (SBA) theme for the upcoming National Small Business Week is “Building a Better America Through Entrepreneurship.”

SBA Director of Strategic Alliances Morning Washburn announced the schedule for the week of May 2-7, which includes a virtual summit, winner’s event, field office events and a national bus tour. National Small Business Week events are free, but registration is required.

In a webinar on April 27, representatives of SBA partners SCORE (service corps of retired executives) and the Public Private Strategies Institute explained the SBA’s new Equity Action Plan.

Presenters included Rhett Buttle, founder of the Public Private Strategies Institute, SCORE VP External Relations Betsy Dougert, and SBA Senior Advisor Aditi Dussault.

What is the SBA Equity Action Plan?

Buttle explained that the Equity Action Plan is to support the goal of Building a Better America by nurturing a community of small businesses.

The community will help more underserved entrepreneurs access capital, participate in government procurement and contract opportunities, get disaster relief, get business advice and more.

What’s new from SCORE

As an SBA resource partner, SCORE offers mentoring, business training, and business tools.

New from SCORE:

Resilience Hub – In response to the pandemic, SCORE will work with business owners to help them obtain government funding, refocus their business as needed, review marketing and address any employee concerns.

SCORE for All – To promote diversity, SCORE will promote diversity by providing specialized resources to small business owners, women, veterans and minorities.

Dougert said SCORE is a free resource funded by the federal government. She recommended working with a mentor to get help with specific questions.

Updates from the SBA

Effects of the Infrastructure and Work Act

Dussault pointed out that the 2021 Infrastructure and Jobs Act brought in $550 billion in new funding. The funding is for improvements to public transport, broadband availability, clean water and repairs to roads and bridges.

How does that affect small businesses?

Improvements to transportation infrastructure will reduce shipping delays. Creating universal broadband will help business owners reach new customers and boost e-commerce. Focus on the Minority Business Development Agency will help small business owners learn resources available to them.

Ongoing Benefits of the US Rescue Plan/CARES Act

Community Navigator Pilot Program – The program will target diverse communities to provide financial assistance and access to capital, as well as assistance with marketing, operations, exports and business development. Changes to Made in America Federal Purchasing Guidelines. New requirements are that products have 75% of components made in the US (previously 55%). Covid roadmap for the future – The approach will focus on protecting against new variants, while avoiding economic and education interruptions and continuing vaccinations.

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