Attention Readers: Emporia News is experiencing a major computer failure. Limited updates will continue and major updates will resume as soon as the computer is repaired or replaced.

In addition the email address news@emporianews.com is not working at the current time. Please send all correspondence to emporianews2@gmail.com until futher notice.

Send news tips, story ideas and advertising questions to emporianews2@gmail.com.

Emporia News is best read in LANDSCAPE view on Mobile Devices. Please rotate your phone or tablet.

Current Weather Conditions

 
Seven Day Forecast for Emporia, Virginia
 

Community Calendar Sponsored By...

 

Small Business Administration

Nearly $20B spent by Americans this Small Business Saturday®

American consumers spent $19.6 billion at independent retailers and restaurants on Small Business Saturday®, according to data released yesterday by American Express and the National Federation of Independent Businesses. Data show shoppers from coast to coast made a significant impact at small businesses during the 10th annual Small Business Saturday®, held November 30, 2019.  

Started by American Express in 2010 and co-sponsored by the U.S. Small Business Administration since 2015, Small Business Saturday® continues to provide small businesses and communities across the country with an economic boost to start the holiday shopping season. This year, consumer participation increased by six million (110 million in 2019 vs. 104 million in 2018) and brought an almost $2B increase in total amount spent ($19.6B estimated in 2019 compared to $17.8B in 2018).

“Small Business Saturday’s® success is proof of the economic benefits of shopping small. Seven in ten adults are conscious of the positive impact local small businesses have in their communities,” said the SBA’s acting Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger who oversees the federal agency’s operations in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, D.C., Maryland and Delaware.  Bulger also points to findings that 96% of survey respondents who shopped on Small Business Saturday® agree that shopping at small, independently-owned businesses supports their commitment to making purchases that have a positive social, economic and environmental impact.

In the Virginia-Richmond District Office, there are 745,886 small businesses employing 1.5 million people. The Virginia-Richmond District Office team members visited and shared valuable small business resource information with small business owners in the Richmond, Chesapeake and Fredericksburg areas.

“Small businesses are an integral part of Virginia’s economy and positive impact aggregately,” said Carl Knoblock, SBA Virginia-Richmond District Director.

Meanwhile, many shoppers using smartphones, spent $3.6 billion buying online from small businesses on Small Business Saturday®.  Adobe Analytics, which tracks online sales, says that’s up 18% from a year earlier.  Adobe reported holiday season sales are on track to grow 14.9% from 2018.  Small businesses have already garnered $68.2 billion in online sales from November 1 to November 30.

According to the survey, 97% of consumers who shopped on Small Business Saturday® agree that small businesses are essential to their community and 95% reported the day makes them want to shop or eat at small, independently-owned businesses all year long, not just during the holiday season. The SBA continues to inspire neighbors to make a conscious decision to Shop Small® year-round by recognizing their spending at local merchants and community businesses.

SBA Celebrates Small Business Saturday in Communities across America

#ShopSmall on Saturday, November 30

WASHINGTON –U.S. Small Business Administration Acting Administrator Chris Pilkerton is encouraging Americans to support local communities by shopping at small businesses on Saturday, November 30. Celebrated each year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Small Business Saturday allows consumers to make a tremendous impact in their neighborhoods by supporting local small businesses. Last year, an estimated 104 million consumers nationwide “shopped small” on Small Business Saturday. 

“Supporting the local economy is the driving force behind Small Business Saturday, and every year the SBA has been proud to rally the community during this vibrant holiday shopping season event,” said Acting Administrator Chris Pilkerton. “The SBA helps empower America’s 30 million small businesses by providing them with tools they need to start, grow and expand during the holiday season and throughout the year.”

This year marks the tenth Small Business Saturday, an annual celebration of America’s small business community. Last year on Small Business Saturday, Americans spent a combined $17.8 billion at independent neighborhood retailers and restaurants.

Today, there are over 30 million small businesses in the United States. About half of all American workers are either employed by a small business or own a small business. And two out of three net new jobs are created by small businesses.  For more Small Business Saturday details, visit www.sba.gov/saturday.

Cosponsorship Authorization # 19-2050-93. SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.

Shop Small® this Holiday Season with the Small Business Administration

Supporting Small Businesses Supports Our Communities

BY: SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator (acting) Steve Bulger

As the voice of our nation’s entrepreneurs, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) celebrates the 30 million small businesses igniting our economy and enriching our communities throughout the year. We are once again partnering with organizations across the country this holiday shopping season to celebrate Small Business Saturday® (the Saturday after Thanksgiving); a day to honor and support small businesses for all they contribute to our communities. 

Supporting America’s entrepreneurs can be as simple as “Shopping Small” at Main Street merchants, which create two out of three net new jobs in our communities. Your dollars make an impact. Last year, total reported spending among U.S. consumers who said they shopped at independent retailers and restaurants on the day reached a record high of $17.8 billion. Shoppers also turned out for online small businesses in 2018 – among consumers who said they participated on the day, 41% reported that they shopped small online on Small Business Saturday. This is positive news for all of us, especially during the holiday season, as Americans boost their local economies.

In so many ways, small businesses are the glue that holds our communities together. In addition to providing jobs and contributing to the local tax base, small businesses donate 250% more than larger businesses to local non-profits and community causes. Seventy five percent donate an average of 6% of their profits to charitable organizations annually. 81% of small businesses plan on giving back to their community in 2019.

Each small business typically has a list of different organizations and causes it donates to: 66% give to local charities, 48% support local youth organizations, 42% donate to local first responders… the list goes on. I encourage you to join me and more than 100 million Americans in shopping and dining small on Small Business Saturday® as you check off items on your holiday shopping list.

This year, to help bring attention to our locally owned retailers and restauranteurs, SBA is visiting neighborhoods near you. In Virginia, we’re visiting small businesses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Fredericksburg and the greater Richmond area providing tips and tricks for Small Business Saturday® through Nov 26th. Join us and meet with local business owners to highlight the impact their presence and your dollars have on making our Virginia communities a great place to live and shop.

Thank you for shopping small this holiday season. Let us know how you’re supporting your local entrepreneurs on Small Business Saturday by using #ShopSmall on social media as you go about your shopping. For more information, visit  www.sba.gov/saturday.

SBA Announces Funding Competition to Organizations Providing Training to Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurs

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration today announced non-profit organizations, state and local agencies, and institutions of higher learning are eligible to compete for funding of up to $150,000 to deliver entrepreneurship training to service-disabled veterans.

Up to six awardees will use $300,000 in total funding to participate in the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program with grants from SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development. These funds will be used to cover the costs of educating service-disabled veterans planning to start a new business or expand and diversify existing small businesses.

“Despite challenges they may face, service-disabled veterans have pursued entrepreneurship and established successful companies nationwide,” said Larry Stubblefield, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development. “We look forward to working with the awardees to provide more service-disabled veterans and their families with the training and resources they need to start or grow a small business.”

Eligible organizations should submit applications for the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program funding opportunity only through Grants.gov . Applications not submitted via Grants.gov will not be evaluated. The submission deadline is Wednesday, July 24 at 11:59 p.m. EDT.

SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development hosts a conference call Thursday, July 11 at 2 p.m. EDT to answer questions related to the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program grant announcement. Please submit questions in advance to Jerry Godwin at jerry.godwin@sba.gov no later than Tuesday, July 9 at 4 pm. EDT.

The call-in number and access code are:

  • Call in number: (202) 765-1264
  • Conference ID: 13482739#

Information, including a transcript of the webinar once it is available, will be posted on grants.gov and www.sba.gov/ovbd.

SBA Announces FY 2018 State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Awards

SBA Awards $18 Million to Expand Small Business Exporting

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that $18 million in funding has been awarded to 47 State international trade agencies through SBA’s competitive State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), to support export growth among U.S. small businesses.

STEP is designed to meet three distinctive goals: to increase the number of small businesses that export, to increase the value of exports for small businesses, and to increase the number of small businesses that explore significant new trade opportunities. Expanding the base of small business exporters and making the process as easy as possible is a key component of the Administration’s small business strategy.

“The SBA is committed to ensuring equal access for small businesses to international markets and expanding export opportunities, and ensuring small businesses have the resources they need to drive their businesses and local communities forward,” said SBA Administrator Linda McMahon. “The STEP awards are an important resource that provide small businesses with the confidence and funding they need to thrive in this competitive international market.”

Since the beginning of the STEP program seven years ago, approximately $138 million in grants have been awarded to fund export opportunities and increase the footprint of small businesses in countries all over the world.

“The 2018 STEP awards is a great opportunity for states to help small businesses with the information and tools they need to succeed in exporting,” said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian who oversees SBA programs in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, D.C. and Pennsylvania. “Assistance includes participation in foreign trade missions, foreign-market sales trips, and services provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce, as well as design of international marketing campaigns, export trade show exhibits, training workshops and more.”

STEP awards are managed and provided at the local level by state government organizations. The program is managed at the national level by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of International Trade.

SBA Announces Decrease in Surety Bond Guarantee Fees

WASHINGTON –The U.S. Small Business Administration announces the first fee decrease in Surety Bond Guarantees in 12 years. The fee decrease will be in effect for guaranteed bonds approved during fiscal year 2019, taking effect October 1, 2018 and ending September 30, 2019.

The Surety Bond Guarantee (SBG) program is reducing the Surety fee from 26 percent to 20 percent of the bond premium charged to the small businesses and reducing its contractor fee from $7.29 per thousand dollars of the contract amount to $6.00 per thousand dollars of the contract amount.

“Reducing the SBG program fees will not only directly help small businesses, but also will incentivize surety companies and their agents to increase support for small businesses in the marketplace,” said Peter C. Gibbs, Acting Director of the Office of Surety Guarantees.

Under its SBG program, the SBA guarantees bid, payment and performance bonds for small and emerging contractors who cannot obtain surety bonds through regular commercial channels.  SBA guarantees contracts up to $10 million, including the streamlined QuickApp application for those up to $400,000.

“This is great news for America’s entrepreneurs,” said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian. “Incentivizing sureties to provide bonding for small contractors improves access to contracts, which are often make-or-break opportunities in the life of a business.”

Currently, there are 34 participating sureties and over 350 active agents in the SBG program.  On average, completed surety bond applications are reviewed and processed in less than two days.
The program is currently outperforming its previous year results yielding 27,000 jobs supported, 3,000 final bonds, and $1.7 billion in final bond contract amounts in fiscal year 2018.

For more information about this decrease or further assistance, contact Jermanne Perry, Senior Management Analyst, Office of Surety Guarantees, (202) 401-8275; jermanne.perry@sba.gov, or your local SBA District Office.

Small Businesses and Workers Benefiting from Tax Cuts

BY: SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian

President Donald J. Trump had taxpayers and small business owners in mind when he signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law December 22, 2017. The new law cut corporate tax rates from 35% to 21% for 2018 and lowered income tax at nearly all levels. Tax cuts for working families allow them to keep more of their hard-earned money and provide more opportunity for everyone to achieve the American dream.

Cutting back taxes for American business owners allows our nation of entrepreneurs to grow the economy from within while competing globally with international businesses interests. A lower tax rate opens the door to new and better opportunities. It also enables employers to reward their employees with higher wages, bonuses and better benefits, which frees up hard-earned capital for growth-minded businesspeople to reinvest in their companies by hiring more workers, buying better equipment, and building new facilities.

The new tax cuts are applied nearly across the board, but with emphasis on businesses that are key to stimulating economic growth as a benefit to the whole country. Lower taxes mean more of our own money is free for us to grow and create jobs ourselves. When we pocket more of our salaries and more of our business profits, we are more likely to spend that “newfound” money, which continues to bolster the economy so we all benefit from this increase in our “bottom line.” As I travel across SBA’s Mid-Atlantic Region to speak with business owners, they tell me they are using these tax savings to reinvest in themselves, and their communities.

As a direct result of the new tax law, Dollar Bank in Pittsburgh earlier this year announced $2,000 permanent raises for their employees making $60,000 or less per year – about 60% of their 1,300-person workforce. NexTier Bank in Butler, Pennsylvania paid out $1,000 bonuses for all employees and is using their tax cuts to fund tuition reimbursement, on-the-job training and wage raises for hourly employees.

Please be sure to think ahead about how this tax relief law affects you and your community. Look over the new tax rules with your accountant if you use one, or speak to one of the thousands of SBA-sponsored SCORE mentors or with your local Small Business Development Center for advice on the next steps for your small business. Take advantage of the extra money in your pocket and reinvest in yourselves, your business, and your country. We have a great opportunity to once again prove what small businesses can do for the economy when we remove barriers to their success.

Subscribe to RSS - Small Business Administration

Emporia News

Stories on Emporianews.com are be searchable, using the box above. All new stories will be tagged with the date (format YYYY-M-D or 2013-1-1) and the names of persons, places, institutions, etc. mentioned in the article. This database feature will make it easier for those people wishing to find and re-read an article.  For anyone wishing to view previous day's pages, you may click on the "Previous Day's Pages" link in the menu at the top of the page, or search by date (YYYY-M-D format) using the box above.

Comment Policy:  When an article or poll is open for comments feel free to leave one.  Please remember to be respectful when you comment (no foul or hateful language, no racial slurs, etc) and keep our comments safe for work and children. Comments are moderated and comments that contain explicit or hateful words will be deleted.  IP addresses are tracked for comments. 

EmporiaNews.com serves Emporia and Greensville County, Virginia and the surrounding area
and is provided as a community service by the Advertisers and Sponsors.
All material on EmporiaNews.com is copyright 2005-2019
EmporiaNews.com is powered by Drupal and based on the ThemeBrain Sirate Theme.

Submit Your Story!

Emporia News welcomes your submissions!  You may submit articles, announcements, school or sports information or community calendar events via e-mail on news@emporianews.com. 

Contact us at news@emporianews.com
 
EmporiaNews.com is hosted as a community Service by Telpage.  Visit their website at www.telpage.net or call (434)634-5100 (NOTICE: Telpage cannot help you with questions about Emporia New nor does Teplage have any input the content of Emporia News.  Please use the e-mail address above if you have any questions, comments or concerns about the content on Emporia News.)