Chamber offers small business course

NORWICH – Commerce Chenango is pleased to announce that the next 30-hour course “Starting or Expanding a Small Business” will begin in Norwich on Oct. 18.

The class is being offered in conjunction with Morrisville State College, and will be taught by Steven Ohl, an experienced business and accounting professor. It will be offered on Tuesday nights for ten weeks, starting on Oct. 18, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Morrisville State College Norwich Campus. The tuition for this valuable class (workbook included) is just $200.

Microenterprise owners (or start-ups) who successfully complete the course, and meet other screening requirements, may be eligible apply for grant funding through the Chenango County Microenterprise Grant Program. Program participants will be expected to pay tuition to participate in the course, and successful LMI grant recipients will be eligible to have their tuition reimbursed with program funds. Based on identified needs in Chenango County, individuals seeking to expand home-based businesses, register a new child care business, or expand an agricultural or farm based business are encouraged to participate.

A microenterprise is any type of business with four or less employees including the owner(s). In order to qualify for grant funding, the owners must be deemed as income eligible through a screening process, or they must plan to create new job opportunities for low- and moderate income residents of Chenango County. Applicants will be considered for grant amounts of $5,000 to $25,000.

The grant application process will include the expectation that the applicant has a solid business plan, cash flow projections, and a positive or neutral personal financial history. Owners will be expected to provide at least ten percent cash equity to the proposed projects, and projects that leverage additional outside funding from private sources will be viewed more favorably. Projects proposing to create new jobs in Chenango County will be given preference.

Technical assistance with business plans and financial projections will also be available at Commerce Chenango by Economic Development Director Jennifer Tavares. Eligible businesses and projects will receive assistance with program requirements, small business planning, financial projections, and grant or loan applications.

For more information on the Chenango County Microenterprise Program or to register for the small business planning course, contact Jennifer Tavares of Commerce Chenango at 334-5532.

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