Secretary Williams and SOS staff attend small business round tables

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams recently attended a meeting arranged by the Small Business Administration. He is with Dan Nordberg, the Regional VIII director of the Small Business Administration, and Frances Padilla, director of the Colorado U.S. SBA district office, Becky Fuller, and Raul Acosta.

Secretary of State Wayne Williams and Mike Hardin, the director of business and licensing for the SOS, last week attended Colorado Regional Regulatory Reform Roundtables organized by the U.S. Small Business Administration in Colorado Springs and Fort Collins, respectively.

The SBA’s office of advocacy organized round tables across the country to hear from local small businesses from various industries, including transportation, real estate, manufacturing and more. The round tables aim to “discover burdensome regulations that might be hindering the business environment,” SBA Regional Administrator Dan Nordberg said.

The SBA advocacy office will take the information to Congress to try to amend statutory regulations or try to address the regulations within the preview of agencies.

“It’s important to get input from small businesses,” Secretary Williams said. “This program provided an excellent opportunity to receive that input and showcased our office’s commitment to helping folks realize their American dream.”

In early June, MyBizColorado was launched by the Secretary of State’s office in partnership with the Governor. Since then, the Denver Business Journal reported Denver leading the nation in small-business job growth and ranked 3rd in wage growth. Colorado was also the first state in the nation to offer all business certification services online.

“I was particularly happy with the positive comments about our new innovations like free online certificates of good standing and our new MyBiz.Colorado.Gov portal,” Williams said.

Mark Hardin, left, the director of Business and Licensing for the Colorado Secretary of State’s office, attended the SBA Office of Advocacy event in Fort Collins last week.

The SBA has applauded the vibrant and growing Colorado small business community, but concerns about tourism and trucking industry regulations remain for businesses, said Nordberg, who attended both Colorado round tables.

“There is a major commercial truck driving license shortage,” Nordberg said. “There are just not enough drivers out there right now.”

As a result, smaller trucking companies are struggling to make deadlines.

“You’re supposed to have your shelves in the store stocked up and the shipment doesn’t come on time,” Nordberg explained. “Well, there wasn’t a driver on the other end to support that.”

Beyond licensure concerns, small businesses also reported challenges in transportation law restrictions and the transition to an electronic reporting system, according to Hardin and Nordberg.

Other small business concerns included the “cost of compliance and the impact on subcontracting, rising commercial property expenses, and timing of IRS reporting,” Hardin said.

Nordberg also said that the reporting requirements from the Affordable Care Act “can be onerous and burdensome for small businesses.”

Hardin enjoyed the opportunity to hear from businesses,  inding it informative and helpful to gain insight into the challenges they face.

“Our office has a strong relationship with the Small Business Administration and we appreciate being invited to participate.” Hardin said. “We look forward to partnering with the SBA in the future and helping Colorado small businesses succeed.”