ANNAPOLIS, MD (June 3, 2010) –Governor Martin O’Malley signed Executive Order 01.01.2010.13, that would create the Governor’s Commission on Small Business. The 26 member Commission was formed upon recommendation of the Governor’s Task Force on Small Business and is charged with providing a forum for small businesses to articulate and address barriers to business growth.
“Small business is the foundation of Maryland’s economy. If we’re going to turn the corner from recovery to prosperity, we must continue to recognize that our progress as a State depends on the prosperity of small businesses,” Governor O’Malley said. “The creation of this Commission will help our State identify barriers to assist small business development in our State.”
Small businesses represent more than 97 percent of the all employers and more than 54 percent of the private sector workforce in Maryland. Last year, the Governor established the Governor’s Task Force on Small Business to advocate actions, identify barriers and solicit input on issues of importance to the sustainability and growth of Maryland’s small businesses. The Task Force convened and submitted a report to Governor O’Malley in December of 2009. Priorities from the Task Force included establishing a center for small business excellence and establishing a Maryland Small Business Commission.
The Commission consists of members appointed by the Governor, the Senate President and the Speaker of the House. Ex-officio members include the Secretary of Business and Economic Development, the Secretary of Housing and Community Development, the Secretary of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, the Secretary of General Services and the Secretary of the Governor’s Office of Minority Affairs. The Commission will submit an annual report to the Governor by June 30 of each year.
In addition to providing a forum for small businesses to articulate and address barriers to business growth, the Commission is responsible for recommending economic policy development measures to the Governor and General Assembly, overseeing the implementation of the Small Business Task Force recommendations, developing and recommending a standard definition of small business, advocating for full employment and skills upgrades to support business development and job creation in emerging and growth industries, identifying public/private partnership opportunities to supplement small business economic programs and financial incentives, and identifying methods to improve resource accessibility for small Minority Business Enterprises, among others.
The full Executive Order can be found here: www.governor.maryland.gov/documents/100602EOSmallBusiness.pdf. For information on small business resources and assistance or the Commission, contact the Department of Business and Economic Development at 410-767-6300 or visit www.ChooseMaryland.org.