City’s small business plan announced

The City of Boston’s small business plan has been released and will be used a roadmap that allows the City to support local small business, especially those that are owned by minorities, women, and immigrants, according to a press release.

The plan will “ensure a thriving small business economy in the city, enhance the vibrancy of our neighborhoods, and continue to pursue economic and social inclusion and equity,” said Mayor Martin Walsh, according to the press release.

The creation of the plan is a result of a yearlong effort by the City’s Department of Neighborhood Development and the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and aided by the Mayor’s Small Business Advisory Council, which consists of 34 small business community members, representing an array of businesses and startups.

The plan outlines the state of the small business community and identifies key “gaps,” or areas that small businesses’ needs are not being met. These gaps include, but are not limited to: support for minority-, women-, and immigrant-owned businesses; availability of capital; availability of and access to affordable real estate; and access to new customers. The plan acknowledges that those gaps are most acutely felt by minority-, women-, and immigrant-owned businesses, and the City will prioritize the needs of those historically underrepresented entrepreneurs.

The five-year plan aims to establish a small business center; increase small business capital availability; and increase small business real estate availability, accessibility, and affordability.

“As I’ve grown my cleaning companies from two to more than 40 employees, the City of Boston has been a key supporter,” said Victoria Amador, owner of Tremendous Maid and Boston’s Best Commercial Cleaning, and a member of the Small Business Plan Advisory Council, according to the press release. “I’ve built my businesses on excellent customer service, by paying close attention to the needs of my employees, and growing through new contracting opportunities with institutions in the city. I am pleased to see that the City is increasing its commitment to customer service and to helping business owners like me grow their businesses.”

Next Street, a consulting firm in Dudley Square, and Mass Economics, located in Cambridge, provided the plan’s research, writing, and development.

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