Support Small Business Technical Assistance

Help MACDC secure $2.5 million for the Small Business Technical Assistance (SBTA) program (line item 7002-0040) -- administered by MA Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) --  in the state’s FY 2018 budget.

Please sign onto the letter below.

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Rep. Robert DeLeo
Office of the Speaker

Senator Stanley Rosenberg
Office of the President
State House
Boston, MA  02133

Dear Speaker DeLeo and Senate President Rosenberg:

We are writing as business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs who have benefited from the state’s Small Business Technical Assistance Program to request that you fully fund this vital program in the state’s FY 2018 budget.

The SBTA program provides grants on a competitive basis to community-based organizations across the Commonwealth. These organizations use these resources to support people like us – small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs that need help to start, sustain and grow our businesses. Our businesses serve communities across the state, providing services and products that help to revitalize local business districts, create jobs and build wealth in lower-income communities. The assistance provided by these local community-based organizations is often the difference between success and failure as they help us to write business plans, obtain new customers, secure appropriate real estate, obtain financing and otherwise navigate the many complexities of owning a small business. 

While this program has been successfully serving businesses for a decade, its funding was cut from $2 million to $1 million in FY 2017. This forced the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC), which administers the program, to dramatically cut funding to community-based groups across the state, which in turn has resulted in fewer businesses being served, and is a further impediment to sustaining successful minority- and women-owned businesses in low- and moderate-income communities across the Commonwealth. 

We write today to highlight our shared concern about diminished funding for this vital economic development tool and we respectfully urge the Legislature to provide funding for the Small Business Technical Assistance (SBTA) program (line item 7002-0040) of $2.5 million. This level of funding represents a modest increase from the $2 million that the Legislature provided in FY 2016. 

The SBTA program has served thousands of small businesses since it was first established in FY 2007.  In fiscal year 2016, when the program was funded at $2 million, the program achieved the following: 

  • Grants to 32 nonprofit organizations across the state, ranging from $10,000 to $120,000, and Mini-Grants for Professional Services to 65 small businesses to help them in such areas as accounting, legal services, marketing, and technology;
  • Technical assistance and training from grantee small business assistance providers to 1,891 business clients;
  • 1,056 new jobs were created and 1,594 jobs were preserved, a 22% increase over FY 2015;
  • 367 businesses received financing for a total $29,970,094 and 74% of businesses supported achieved a positive outcome:  opened, grew, or stabilized.

The SBTA program has had longstanding success, and we believe it will be difficult to sustain this level of excellence if the funding cuts are not reversed and further state investment is not encouraged.

Therefore, we respectfully request and encourage you to revive the SBTA program (line item 7002-0040) with funding of $2.5 million in FY 2018, beginning with the House Ways and Means FY 2018 budget recommendations.

We work hard every day running our small businesses. We are committed to serving our customers, our employees and our communities. Individually and collectively, we are bringing economic opportunity to more and more people across the state. The SBTA program, administered by MGCC, is helping us to succeed. It is a relatively small investment that yields significant returns. We hope that you will agree.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,