Thomas Andrew Gustafson

Franklin County small business owners who’ve lost revenue because of the Apalachicola Bay oyster fishery collapse can now apply for federal loans. Franklin and its three surrounding Panhandle counties were recently given the economic emergency designation.

Loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration are available to any business or nonprofit who can show the oyster shortage caused them to lose a big portion of revenue.

Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce Director Anita Grove says borrowing money can help, but loans aren’t for everyone.

No one has applied yet for federal loans now available in several North Florida counties affected by heavy rainfall and stormy weather in early July.  But, officials offering the disaster assistance loans says there’s still time.

Perspectives: DIY Business

Jul 18, 2013

Entrepreneurship is hot in Tallahassee and there’s an abundance of local help to make it even hotter.  On the panel: Keith Bowers from Florida A&M University’s Small Business Development Center; Larry Lynch with the Entrepreneurial Excellence Program for the Economic Development Council of Tallahassee/Leon County; and Mike Campbell with the Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship at Florida State University’s College of Business.

Some business groups see a decision by the Obama Administration to delay a key part of the Affordable Care Act as a small victory in a bigger fight against the law, while others view it as start to scoring larger victories.

Employers with 50 or more employees will now have until 2015 to offer health insurance – a year later than the original deadline. Herrle says the delay is a small win, but there are still concerns:

Nick Evans

Tallahassee’s Regional Matchmaker conference drew businesses from across the state to FSU’s Turnbull Conference Center Thursday.  The event offered entrepreneurs the opportunity to network face-to-face with state and university agencies. 

Florida’s Office of Supplier Diversity cosponsored the event with the goal of promoting business partnerships between minority, veteran, and women business owners throughout the state.  

Six months after the Big Bend Minority Chamber of Commerce launched in Tallahassee, the group is announcing the formation of a Hispanic Council serving Hispanic-owned businesses.

Rosie Cabrera owns Los Amigos Mexican restaurant in Tallahassee. She said, over the past 20 years, she’s watched more and more Hispanic people open businesses in the Big Bend area. And when the Minority Chamber launched last year, she and others approached the group about creating a special subgroup to help her community grow its businesses.

Legislative Session Begins and Local Businesses Take Note

Mar 5, 2013
The Florida Channel

The Legislators are coming! The Legislators are coming! It’s simple math: more people mean more business. And for the city of Tallahassee, the Florida Legislature starting this week means a quick injection to the local economy. Owner of Nic’s Toggery, Victor Gavalas, says it’s a welcome sight.

“Spring Time Tallahassee needs the legislature to… honestly do a lot of business.” Says Gavalas.

The federal  Affordable Care Act  is aimed at getting more Americans insured. To do that, people are required to carry health insurance or pay a fine. Those fines will begin popping up next year, and some tax filing groups are trying to help people examine their options for becoming insured and avoiding the penalty.

Businesses are starting to see a bit of sticker shock, as they renew health insurance policies for their workers. Premiums are going up and some say it’s partly due to the federal healthcare law already in effect. Things like free birth control and no fees for primary care aren’t cheap. And Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida insurance executive John Urbanek says those things still have to be paid for:

Student PSA Videos Warn Floridians About Unlicensed CPA's

Jan 15, 2013
Steven Rodriguez / WFSU-FM

The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation and the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants presented prizes on Tuesday to the winners of a public service video contest. 

New Chamber Of Commerce Caters To Minorities, Women

Nov 14, 2012
Jessica Palombo / WFSU-FM

A new local chamber of commerce is offering its services to businesses owned by minorities and women. The Big Bend Minority Chamber of Commerce announced its launch on Wednesday.

The Big Bend Minority Chamber aims to  serve business owners in Leon, Wakulla, Jefferson, Franklin and Gadsden counties. Gretna City Manager Antonio Jefferson, who serves on the chamber board, says big companies looking for subcontractors often don’t know about the minority-owned businesses in the Big Bend area.

Those affected by Tropical Storm Debby can look to FEMA and the U.S Small Business Administration for help. Recovery centers are still available in several counties to aid victims of property and economic damage. And the Small Business Administration is offering fixed-interest loans to businesses and individuals. But FEMA spokeswoman Patricia Whitt says there is a Sept. 4 deadline to apply for assistance from both agencies.

About 70 percent of small businesses in the U.S. are  eligible for healthcare tax credits under the federal Affordable Care Act.

That’s according to the healthcare consumer advocacy group, Families USA The group released a report Wednesday showing more than 300,000 thousand small businesses in Florida would qualify for the minimum credit- which is about a third of the cost of providing healthcare to employees.

More than 300 of the Capital City area’s movers and shakers gathered at Florida State’s University Center Club Tuesday.  Tom Flanigan reports they were eager to hear the winners of this year’s Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce Awards.

 “This is the 27 th year of our awards ceremony to recognize entrepreneurship, businesses, the commerce of our community and individuals that I hope you’ll agree are the backbone of this community to keep everything moving forward,” said Chamber President Sue Dick.