Thursday, May 09, 2013

SBA shifting funding away from small business training programs, draws fire from Congress

The U.S. Small Business Administration plans to shift some funding away from basic counseling programs for new and small businesses to help finance advanced training for slightly larger companies, part of the agency’s efforts to nurture the economic recovery even as the government reins in spending...

“The existing programs, such as the Small Business Development Centers and SCORE, provide absolutely fantastic services, but they’re different,” Mills recently told the House Small Business Committee, referring to the agency’s network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) and the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) program, both of which provide inexpensive and often free business services. “We want to make sure we reach more entrepreneurs in more places who don’t have access to an intensive entrepreneurship experience.”

At a time when federal spending is being held in check, the SBA proposes to finance the new training course by pulling back on funding for some existing programs. The budget request, for instance, would reduce funding for SBDCs by more than $9.8 million next year and by nearly $500,000 for the SCORE program, both of which tend to target startups and very small businesses.

More from the Washington Post.

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