Karen Mills of the Small Business Administration

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Karen Mills, head of the Small Business Administration, and the newest member of President Obama's cabinet, discusses what the administration is proposing to help small businesses, particularly in urban areas.


Karen Mills

Comments [22]

small business

wow this is really informative post , i have got a lot of information from this post .
small business

Mar. 18 2012 12:16 PM
SBDC Los Angeles

Small Business Development Centers are located through out the country. To located the SBDC nearest you, please visit If you are in California, please visit

Feb. 13 2012 06:51 PM


I'm sure, with your shiny-new Sheldon Silver, $8.50/hr pay increase, that new "insurance®" bill shouldn't be a problem!!


Feb. 09 2012 05:00 PM

"Obamacare" is pejorative.

The term attempts to diminish any forward thinking discussion regarding the corrupt system that is currently imposed on us.

Feb. 09 2012 10:57 AM
Jim from Hamburg, NJ

I own a small US manufacturing firm and competing against China is almost impossible. They will allow firms to sell below their costs and then the Government reimburses them for their loss. To compete small firms need punitive duties against Chinese firms at rates above 45%. Large US retailers want the best price and China can do that every day.

We keep trying to make goods in a smarter, more clever fashion where PRICE is not the driver but China seems to copy what we do and we are back fighting them again. Can the SBA provide any assistance?

Feb. 09 2012 10:56 AM


How about relieving small business from the burdon of providing health "insurance®" and initiate a SINGLE PAYER system!!!

How many new hires would result???

We need to eliminate the corrupt health "insurance®" industry that funnels-off incredible sums of capital from our economy!!


Feb. 09 2012 10:44 AM

Actually it is NOT our health care that is going up, it is our health insurance that is going up. Our health insurance company jacked up our rate from $20,000 to $30,000 with a letter blaming it on Obama. I seriously doubt the unregulated health insurance industry is going to offer affordable health insurance. They are raking in major profits and have no intention of reducing rates for small business. I want what seniors and members of congress have -- affordable health insurance from nonprofits. As for the tax credit -- you have got to be kidding. It does nothing to touch the $30,000 that we have to pay.

Feb. 09 2012 10:39 AM
The Truth from Becky

The employees in the small business pay hell of lot and suffer the 20% increase same as the owners.

Feb. 09 2012 10:38 AM
Robert Matson from Brooklyn

The most experienced and successful small business people I know, including myself, eschew loans because in a downturn the debt can quickly put you out of business. In the New York City landscape, the necessity I have seen for small businesses is commercial space at affordable rents and which won't sky-rocket when a neighborhood becomes desirable.

Feb. 09 2012 10:38 AM
Amy from Manhattan

Why does the caller think the health-care law will make care worse? It's the insurance co's. that are forcing doctors to spend less & less time w/patients & too often denying patients needed care.

Feb. 09 2012 10:36 AM
The Truth from Becky

What is "Obamacare?"

Feb. 09 2012 10:35 AM
Alison from NYC

HELP!! My husband is an LLC small general contractor in Manhattan and was left with over $100,000 of supplier debt due to a bad partnership a couple of years ago -- he needs some GOOD financial advice - WHERE can he get some good advice that is NOT expensive???!!! PLS HELP!!!!!

Feb. 09 2012 10:35 AM
Amy from Manhattan

Do sole proprietors w/no employees count as small businesses? Most of us don't create jobs (aside from our own, which counts for something), unless we subcontract. Does the SBA provide any services for freelancers?

Feb. 09 2012 10:33 AM
anna maria from brooklyn

make it illegal not to pay freelancers!!!

it deprives the government of tax revenue and a large unpaid invoice can put a small business out of business!!! small claims court is no place to try to get paid for work/services provided.

Feb. 09 2012 10:31 AM
NYC Biotech business owners from NYC UWS

I'd like to suggest a discussion about securities regulations as they apply to small businesses. The letter of the law is absolutely crippling for businesses seeking to raise capital. We need exemptions from securities regulations to be expanded in order to allow businesses to start without excessive legal costs. Similarly, we need exemptions from broker-dealer regulations for third parties making introductions to capital sources for small businesses. It's untenable that businesses that are too small to access investment banking support in fundraising cannot use unregistered intermediaries. This is a market gap that is unsupported by the federal government, and an area of massive non-compliance because, again, the letter of the law is unacceptable and unfair to small and growing businesses. These efficiencies would make so much more job creation possible if created by simple adjustments to existing laws.

Feb. 09 2012 10:30 AM
Marc from NY

could you ask how the administration responds to conservative claims that obama's plan to raise taxes on those making more the $200K/year will adversely impact small businesses?

Feb. 09 2012 10:29 AM
Naftali from Brooklyn

I am a Speech and language pathologist in Brooklyn. We are trying to expand my business by hiring additional therapists, adding new therapy rooms and materials, and meeting payroll. The demand for our services is enormous, our phones don't stop ringing. They range from older patients to three year olds. I am having trouble getting bank loans to support my business expansion plans. Why is it so hard to get a bank loan, and how can we grow without the support of financial institutions. I got an SBA loan in 2007 but since then I was not able to get the capital we need from the banks.

Feb. 09 2012 10:28 AM
Dana from Yonkers

We have two family-owned and operated small retail business. And they are small, there are 6 of us for both stores. We just checked into the health insurance tax credit and it doesn't apply to us. Many small business programs don't apply to owner-operated small businesses and I don't see why not. In the communities where we are - Queens and Yonkers most of the small business owners I know are in our boat.

Feb. 09 2012 10:27 AM
NYCarl from LES

We (small business owners) need health care benefits for our employees and ourselves, that we don't need to manage!

The easiest thing for us would be for there to be single-payer health care so that we can focus on our business and not managing health care.

Feb. 09 2012 10:26 AM
Fishmael from NYC


Can you please ask Karen Mills to comment on these items from your preceding segment:

- Sheldon Silver: "Nobody that works full-time in America should be poor" (paraphrased)

- The proposal for a "living wage" ($10 or more)

Can you ask her to comment on how the Administration sees this confluence of issues?


Feb. 09 2012 10:23 AM
Family of 5 from Bed-Stuy

We just opened a restaurant in Bed-Stuy last year. While it is tremendously supported by the neighborhood, and has enjoyed write-ups in papers such as the New York Times, we are finding it difficult to keep afloat. Regulations are killing us. We find it hard to make payroll each month. It costs around $100-200 per week to add ea. employee. We cannot find tip employees to work when business is slow additionally, we cannot afford to pay them the $5/ hour.
We have come into the neighborhood and transformed the block. We are creating jobs. We work 50-70 hour weeks... Yet there little to no reward (we live at the poverty level.) Businesses like ours would benefit from government grants/refunds for all that we have done to improve the 'hood and we should be rewarded for staying in business each year. Individuals get these types of benefits (i.e. food stamps, cash benefits for kids going to go back to school, etc.), why not Small businesses in up-and coming areas who have taken these high risks.

Feb. 09 2012 10:17 AM

Small business includes companies with up to 500 elements. My small business, with two partners, and a handful of interns and another handful of freelancers has as much in common with a company with 100 employees as that company has with Exxon. Can there be a Micro Business Administration (Nano?) for companies like mine? One thing we are in desperate need of is simplification of forms, reports, taxes and fees. If we had 100 employees it would make perfect sense for at least one of them to be totally on top of federal, state and local regulations, reports, filings and fees. For us this is torture and it really gets in the way. For example it inhibits hiring full-time regular employees. I don't begrudge the fees and taxes-- it's the paper work, reading governmenteese, etc. I wish we could get a single bill from the three levels of government that we could just PAY. I would even pay a premium for this kind of service.

Feb. 09 2012 10:09 AM

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