President Obama wants cities to be more startup friendly. So the Small Business Administration held a grant competition which awarded 25 U.S. cities $50,000 to streamline the bureaucratic processes that entrepreneurs face when starting up. Here’s a quotation from sba.gov:
Our cities and communities are committed to making it easier for every entrepreneur to start a business. We believe an entrepreneur’s time is best spent developing innovative products and services, creating jobs, and growing local economies—not navigating red tape. While fair zoning rules, licenses, and permits are important to ensuring public safety and fair competition, it should not take more than a day for an entrepreneur to identify and apply, ideally through a single online tool, for all the licenses and permits they need in order to responsibly launch a business.
Startup in a Day
Thanks to a collaborative effort, Peoria is one of 25 cities that was recently awarded a “Startup in a Day” grant worth $50,000 to:
- Create a “Startup in a Day” online tool within 12 months: we will develop within a year a website or application that lets most entrepreneurs identify and apply within one day for all requirements to launch a business in our respective communities.
- Develop a streamlined, business-friendly, online permitting system: Our pledge is a first step in a larger effort to streamline, simplify, and bring online those regulatory requirements that have traditionally been fragmented across multiple agencies and handled through a paper-based process. Our ultimate goal is for small business owners to be able to manage and complete most of their regulatory obligations within a single easy-to-use online system.
- Share best practices: In an effort to encourage other municipalities to join us in this effort, we are joining a community of practice administered by the National League of Cities, and commit to sharing best practices, publicizing key learnings, highlighting tangible outcomes, supporting smart regulatory simplification, and providing visibility into our actions.
This success story is a result of a collaboration among Startup Peoria, Greater Peoria Economic Development Council, Small Business Development Center at Bradley University, City of Peoria, and Peoria County.