CSN to Offer Help to Small Businesses

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Greetings from the College of Southern Nevada!

Many important bills were passed in the recently completed legislative session that will affect higher education and business development in Southern Nevada.

One such bill will affect both. Assembly Bill 399 establishes the Nevada Grow Program. The primary purpose of the bill is to work with existing businesses within economically depressed areas to help them expand.

The program appropriates $150,000 to CSN for the project to hire a Geographic Information Specialist and to purchase software to support the program. We are already making plans to do this.

The project will be run out of the Nevada Workforce Development Center, a partnership between CSN’s Division of Workforce and Economic Development and the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation located on CSN’s Cheyenne campus. It is the only partnership of its kind in the State and is primarily designed to help employers with their recruitment and training needs.

The program will have four areas of emphasis:

  • Individualized and tailored business assistance.
  • Regularly scheduled group seminars that address general business issues.
  • Business development grants and loans.
  • A business barter and discount network.

“This is a natural for our division,” said Dan Gouker, who leads our Division of Workforce and Economic Development. “I am absolutely a firm believer in helping existing Nevada businesses grow.”

Small businesses within a zone that encompasses parts of downtown Las Vegas, unincorporated Clark County and North Las Vegas will be able to apply for help. The area is economically depressed, but Gouker said there are more than 5,000 businesses there. Many of them could use help to grow.

The help available will include developing a business plan, analyzing market trends, and becoming familiar with the potential customer base.

“We are going to make a huge difference for all the businesses,” Gouker said. “They’re all going to grow.”

This column ran online July 31, 2015 in El Tiempo

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