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February 13, 2020 12:39pm

How GLI advocates for small businesses

GLI delivered remarks in support of small businesses and Kentucky’s Small Business Development Center (KYSBDC) in Frankfort this afternoon. GLI’s Vice President of Government Affairs and Public Policy, Iris Wilbur Glick, addressed members of the House Committee on Small Business and Information Technology, stressing the importance of funding KYSBDC in the state budget.

GLI’s VP of Government Affairs & Public Policy speaking in support of KYSBDC

KYSBDC offers vital services to entrepreneurs and small business owners, ranging from one-on-one management consultations and training workshops to market research and financial projections. They operate a dozen centers throughout the state — including one in Louisville — and have been around for more than 35 years.

Funding for KYSBDC is provided through federal dollars and a state match that is appropriated in Kentucky’s biennial budget. Ensuring full funding for KYSBDC is a key GLI legislative priority in 2020.

Read GLI’s full testimony below.

Good morning Chair Pratt and members of the committee.

My name is Iris Wilbur Glick with Greater Louisville Inc. GLI is an economic development organization and chamber of commerce, representing more than 1,700 businesses throughout the greater Louisville region.

Of those businesses, a good portion of our membership consists of small businesses. That is why I very much appreciate this opportunity to share with you a tremendous organization and resource made available to greater Louisville and throughout Kentucky, and that is the Kentucky Small Business Development Center.

With state support, this organization leverages $1.7M in federal funds, which finances 10 offices throughout the commonwealth. In partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, they provide free one-on-one business consulting to help Kentuckians start and expand businesses. As many of you know, acquiring capital, managing finances, and developing markets to improve profitability are difficult- but our small business owners do not have to navigate it alone. Ranging from veteran to minority-owned businesses or local breweries to manufacturers, Kentucky’s only nationally accredited small business development program is making a big difference.

Each year, SBDC conducts an economic impact report that analyzes the sales and employment changes and financing obtained through their clients. The most recent report found that these small businesses generated $88.6 million in incremental sales and 1,927 new jobs through SBDC’s counseling assistance. The incremental performance of these businesses yielded approximately $10 million in tax revenues- $5.2 million of that in state taxes.

Through SBDC’s proven methods and services, they have helped their clients increase sales and add jobs, more so compared to the average Kentucky small business. Since the last budget session, SBDC has directly contributed to over 1,500 new jobs and nearly 8,000 jobs have been retained. These are just a few of their impressive data points that clearly illustrate a strong ROI for Kentucky.

As this body contributes to discussions related to the two-year budget, GLI urges you to prioritize investment in the Kentucky Small Business Development Center through University of Kentucky’s Center for Entrepreneurship. Thank you.