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Small Biz Bulletin - February 2023

Inauguration

Making History

History was made in Annapolis when Wes Moore was sworn in as Maryland's first African American governor and Aruna Miller took the oath of office as our first Asian Indian American Lt. Governor on January 18, 2023. During his inaugural address on the steps of the Maryland State House, Governor Moore said this is an opportunity to lead with love, create with compassion, and fight fearlessly to build a state that leaves no one behind. During his first week in office, he released his preliminary FY 2024 Budget Plan, created the Office of Civic and Service Innovation, chaired his first Board of Public Works meeting, and continued filling cabinet appointments. We look forward to working with Governor Moore and Lt. Governor Miller to take on the challenges facing the great State of Maryland. Let's get to work!

The Office of Governor Wes Moore

Black History Month 2023

For Your Information

Celebrating Black History Month

February is Black History Month. The story of this annual celebration began in 1915, half a century after the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in the United States. It progressed through 1976 when President Gerald Ford officially designated February as Black History Month. Since 1976, every American president has done the same and endorsed a specific theme. In 2023, the theme "Black Resistance," explores how African Americans have resisted historic and ongoing oppression. Marylanders have played an important role in holding America accountable to its promises of freedom, liberty, and justice for all. Check out the link below that highlights these civil rights heroes. You can celebrate Black History Month with partners such as the Library of Congress, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, and the Smithsonian Institution. Visit the Black History Month webpage for a calendar of events. 

23 Civil Rights Heroes From Maryland You Need to Know
Black History Month Webpage

Maryland Flag and Capitol

Maryland General Assembly 

The 445th session of the Maryland General Assembly is underway in Annapolis. It is a bicameral body comprised of an upper chamber (Maryland State Senate) and a lower chamber (Maryland House of Delegates). The men and women elected to serve in the legislature will consider more than 2,300 pieces of legislation as well as the state's annual budged during the 90 day session that ends on April 10th. The legislative process works best when all stakeholders are engaged. Use the link below and visit the Maryland General Assembly webpage to learn more about the legislative process, identify your representatives, track legislation, or watch livestream activities in both chambers throughout the legislative session. 

Maryland General Assembly

Ofshore Wind turbines

Offshore Wind Partnering Forum

Maryland is hosting the International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum (IPF) from March 28-30, 2023 at the Baltimore Convention Center. Hosted by the Business Network for Offshore Wind, this 3-day event connects global leaders and businesses of all sizes across the supply chain. Inclusion is built into Maryland's offshore wind program, and minority-owned businesses are encouraged to seek opportunities in this new industry. IPF 2023 offers unparalleled networking opportunities and will provide attendees with breaking updates on the offshore wind's rapid expansion. Scholarships are available to qualified businesses. The schedule of events includes the Central Atlantic Supplier Day on March 28 at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum in Baltimore. This supply chain event connects companies to business opportunities throughout the Central Atlantic region. 

IPF 2023
IPF Scholarship Information 
Central Atlantic Supplier Day

TIPS Webinar Series

Networking & Training Events

T.I.P.S. Webinar Series

Entrepreneurs should never stop learning! Join us for the T.I.P.S. Webinar Series in February. Our Training and Insights for Procurement Success webinar series can help you improve core competencies and gain an insightful understanding of the state's procurement processes. There is no cost to participate, just register in advance to receive the participation link.  

Classes are offered every month. Visit the T.I.P.S. Webinar Series webpage to download the slide deck of last month's classes or check out our YouTube Playlist to view any of the recorded sessions over the past year.

T.I.P.S. Webinar Series
T.I.P.S. Webinar Series Playlist

Blue Register Now Button

Events Calendar

Stay connected to the many opportunities for training, networking, and business development that are taking place across Maryland and on virtual platforms. Here is a highlight of some of the events coming up this month. 

02/02/2023 - Resources for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses
02/03/2023 - Small Biz Resource Connections: SBDC Southern Maryland Region
02/07/2023 - Networking for Government Contractors
02/07/2023 - MBE Application Assistance Workshop
02/09/2023 - Navigating Non-Disclosure & Teaming Agreements
02/15/2023 - Managing Your Company Finances Utilizing the Indirect Rate Cost Methodology
02/21/2023 - Business Resilience
02/21/2023 - T.I.P.S. Webinar Series: Navigating eMaryland Marketplace Advantage (eMMA)
02/23/2023 - T.I.P.S. Webinar Series: Prime Contracting in Maryland's Small Business Reserve (SBR) Program
02/23/2023 - Celebrating Black History Month: How to Thrive as a Black Owned Business

Check out the full listing of small business events online at
goMDsmallbiz.maryland.gov.

We Want You

We Want You!

We continually share information curated specifically for small, minority, women, and veteran-owned businesses on our social media platforms. We'll inspire you with our #MotivationMonday series and connect you to a broad range of small business resource organizations. We also share information about loan programs and funding opportunities as well as small business events and training programs. Please join our social media community and follow us on Facebook and Twitter. 

Facebook
Twitter

Let's Get To Work! As a unit of the Executive Department, the Governor's Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs connects members of the small, minority, women, and veteran business communities to greater economic opportunities. Learn more by visiting our website at goMDsmallbiz.maryland.gov and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter @goMDsmallbiz..






The Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship Hearing on:

Improving Access to Capital in Underserved Communities: The Community Advantage Program, Microloans, and other SBA Initiatives

(Recording)

Witnesses:

Mr. Jon Gaines, Vice President, Business Services & Finance, Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation

Mr. Nick Schwellenbach, Senior Investigator, Project on Government Oversight

Mr. Robert Villarreal, Chief External Affairs Officer, Momentus Capital-CDC Small Business Finance

Ms. Annemarie Murphy, Executive Vice President, President of SBA Lending, First Bank of the Lake

Summary: The Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship held a hearing on Improving Access to Capital in Underserved Communities: The Community Advantage Program, Microloans, and other SBA Initiatives. Members and witnesses discussed the need for better oversight and support of SBA lending programs to better serve entrepreneurs in underserved communities. The hearing demonstrated bipartisan support for increasing the SBA’s resources to meet the needs of entrepreneurs, however, both parties agree that the SBA must take care to implement proper guardrails to prevent fraud, and bias in lending, and to conduct proper oversight of its lenders. Members also discussed the SBA’s recent proposal to lift the moratorium on the Small Business Lending Company (SBLC) program, and while many were in support of the rule, Members and witnesses stressed a need to ensure fintech lenders are held to the same standards as other SBA lenders if they were to gain SBLC licenses.


Opening Statements


Chairman Ben Cardin (D-MD): Access to capital is the lifeblood of any business but is even more critical for small businesses. Small businesses in underserved communities have lacked access to capital at disproportionate rates. While large banks approved 60% of loans sought by white borrowers, businesses of color faced acceptance rates of between 29%-50% depending on their racial identity. The SBA 7(a) loan program remains a widely recognized tool to increase access to capital for entrepreneurs. This year the SBA approved over 47,000 7(a) loans and many of these borrowers would be unable to access capital elsewhere. However, of those 7(a) loans, only 4% went to Black business owners and 15% went to women. The Community Advantage (CA) program can bridge this gap and we must make it permanent; I have introduced legislation to do so and have high hopes for the legislation in the next Congress. Compared to 7(a), Black business owners received 20% of CA loans and women received 32%. The CA program therefore does an excellent job of addressing the credit gap and is a key tool to providing capital access for entrepreneurs who need it most. The SBA microloan program also provides credit to underbanked entrepreneurs. Microloan borrowers have the most difficult time accessing capital elsewhere and reported they were unable to find financing from traditional banks had it not been for a CA lender. I support SBA’s efforts to level the playing field for small businesses through recent rulemaking initiatives, however guardrails are essential in these programs to protect borrowers and lenders in the program; we need to ensure the SBA’s programs are helping small businesses as intended.


1333 H STREET NW, SUITE 800E, WASHINGTON, DC 20005

T: 202-971-3450 W: PRISMGROUP.GLOBAL

Become a USBC Member

Watch Now! USBC 2022 Policy Breakfast During Congressional Black Caucus Week

2022 USBC Policy Breakfast - Congressional Black Caucus Week

On Tuesday, U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. kicked off Congressional Black Caucus week with its annual policy breakfast. The 2022 USBC Policy Brunch was very insightful and informative with special remarks from Congresswoman Stacey Plaskett, Senator Cory Booker, Congressman Emanuel Clever II, and USBC Chairman of the Board Charles O'Neal. 

USBC President & CEO Ron Busby Sr. delivered his President Address on the BLACKprint - a set of principles that guide the organization's policy agenda.

Guests enjoyed conversations on The Future of Digital Currency with Cleve Mesidor and The New Black Commerce moderated by Howard Jean (CEO Black Meta Agency), Erin Cohee (VP Digital Innovation, OneUnited Bank), Courtney Robinson (Global Head of Financial Inclusion & Policy Development Block) and LaKisha Greenwade. 

The event was made possible by sponsors Crypto.com, Block, NCTA, and Caesars. 

Thank you to all of our sponsors and attendees. USBC members can watch the broadcast of the 2022 USBC Policy Breakfast on Friday, October 7 at 1:00 PM EST via USBC Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn channels.

U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. | programs@usblackchambers.org | usblackchambers.org

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GBBCC Participates in Roundtable with SBA USBC in March

Leaving the Black Business Footprint at the DC Capital - USBC National Conference, July 15, 2022,

(left to right):  Alicea Gay, the Voice USBC's ByBlack Initiative, Debra Keller-Greene, GBBCC Board Chair, and USBC's VP Alisa Joseph.  

Maryland State Directory of New Hire


REPORTING ONLINE HELPS EVERYONE!

Report new hires

Employers must re-report returning employees as new hires.

All new and returning employees must be reported within 20 days of hire or returning to work.


New hire reporting helps children and families get the child support they need. 
It also helps detect fraud in the unemployment system. 

Reporting new hires online has many benefits:

  • Fast and secure online entry or upload
     
  • Reports are more accurate, reducing the need to resend reports later

     
  • It's FREE! No more paper, postage or other material costs!



The Maryland State Directory of New Hire is available to take your new hire reports via our website MD-newhire.com



www.mdnewhire.com
Phone: (888) 634-4737 | Fax: (888) 657-3534

 

State of Maryland Financial Resources & Services 

Department of Human Services Resources & Financial Assistance

dhs.maryland.gov

DHSWebsite

The Maryland Department of Human Services (DHS) is the state’s primary social service provider. Our mission is to aggressively pursue opportunities to assist people in economic need, provide prevention services, and protect vulnerable children and adults.

DHSs website, https://dhs.maryland.gov/, hosts a wealth of information about the agency’s many services and programs, as well as additional resources, for Maryland families and individuals in need of assistance:

• DHS offers several financial assistance options to support individuals and families experiencing trying times. If eligible, you can receive cash assistance for rent, utilities, and many other emergency financial burdens.

https://dhs.maryland.gov/category/financial-assistance/.

• You do not have to weather the tough times alone. DHS services include, financial, medical, and more. Learn more at  https://dhs.maryland.gov/weathering-tough-times/.

• The Department of Human Services is providing updated information to Marylanders regarding our services, operations, and other important resources during the COVID-19 pandemic. Stay informed by visiting our Coronavirus Covid-19 Resources web page at https://dhs.maryland.gov/coronavirus-covid-19-resources/.

myDHR/myMDTHINK Consumer Portal

Marylanders can get information, apply for DHS programs and services, and check the status of applications online at  mydhrbenefits.dhr.state.md.us/dashboardClient/#/home

SupplementalNutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, helps low-income households buy healthy food. Click here to download the Income Guidelines. Apply online: Go to https://mydhrbenefits.dhr.state.md.usPeople who have little or no money may qualify for SNAP benefits right away.
TemporaryCash Assistance (TCA) TCA provides temporary cash assistance to families with dependent children. TCA also prepares participants for independence through work programs. Click here to download the Income Guidelines. Apply online: Go to https://mydhrbenefits.dhr.state.md.us/ to file your application.
Officof Home Energy Assistance Programs (OHEP) OHEP offers help to Marylanders who are facing potential energy shut-offs or having difficulty paying their energy bills. You do not need a turn-off notice to qualify for assistance; eligibility for energy assistance is based on your income. Please also contact your Local Home Energy Program Office at https://dhs.maryland.gov/office-of-home-energy-programs/local-home-energy-program-office/  to speak to a dedicated OHEP specialist who will guide you through all your options for energy assistance. Learn more about energy assistance at  https://dhs.maryland.gov/office-of-home-energy-programs/
Emergency Cash Assistance to Families with Children (EAFC) EAFC provides cash assistance to families who have at least one child under the age of 21 living with them, and need emergency paying rent, utilities, or other urgent bills. Apply online: Go to https://mydhrbenefits.dhr.state.md.us/ to file your application.

 Full PDF Download: State of Maryland Resources.pdf

Baltimore City Procurement Database- Interested in doing business in Baltimore? Click here to learn how you can be a city contractor. 


Anne Arundel County Procurement Database- Anne Arundel County has their new contractor database up and running. This database will be a resource to all the agencies when looking for small businesses for procurement opportunities. The Anne Arundel County eProcurement system will be known as P.O.R.T. (Procurement Operations Resource Technology). Click here to learn more. 


State of Maryland Procurement Database- EMMA is the new E Maryland Marketplace Advantage website for procurement opportunities. You can see contract opportunities and contact instructions to help you get connected to the right people. Click here to learn more


MDOT Certification- Ever consider doing business with the State of Maryland? If you have plans to grow, the certification process could open up new opportunities for new revenue. Click here to learn more.


Baltimore Demographics- Ever wonder where to find info on demographics in Baltimore? Click here to see this summary by the Census Bureau.


Maryland Wealth- Interested in seeing stats on Maryland's wealth and its tax revenue for each city and county? Click here to view the report from the Department of Legislative Services Office of Policy Analysis.


Connect with City Leadership- Want to attend a Board of Estimates meeting or Baltimore City Council meeting to hear from our elected officials? Check out the schedule at: http://www.baltimorecitycouncil.com/complete-calendar


U.S. Economy- Interested in how the U.S. economy is doing? Here is the most current information from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis: https://www.bea.gov/news/glance

Maryland Sick and Safe Leave Information
-by Janice Walker-Emeogo

The law states that leave accrues at the rate of one hour for every thirty hours that an employee works. An employee is not entitled to accrue sick and safe leave during (1) a 2 week pay period in which the employee worked fewer than 24 total hours; (2) a 1 week pay period if the employee worked fewer than a combined total of 24 hours in the current and immediately preceding pay period; or (3) a pay period in which the employee is paid twice per month and worked fewer than 26 hours in the pay period. The leave hours provided for under the law are the minimum number of hours an employee is entitled to earn and accrue. An employer may provide more leave for its employees.

Greater Baltimore Black Chamber of Commerce is a 501(c) 6 and 501(c) 3 non-profit organization. 1325 Bedford Avenue, Suite 5941; Pikesville, MD 21282-7510

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