New York, NY – New York City has implemented a program titled  Small Business First to provide a friendlier atmosphere for small businesses.

There are over 230,000 small businesses in the Big Apple, of which nearly 50 percent are owned by foreign-born New Yorkers. Creating an environment in which these businesses can thrive and grow is critical to the economic health and global competitiveness of the city. This initiative of  interagency policy and procedural integration is expected to save businesses $50 million annually. Since the launch of this project, the time to complete regulatory transactions, such as obtaining permits and licenses, has been reduced by 30 percent.  In 2015, the City launched its first online portal.

“When business owners have access to resources and tools that help their businesses thrive, the city as a whole will share the benefits of their success,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “That’s why we’re putting small businesses first by implementing policies and programs that expand economic opportunity and cut red tape, helping small businesses establish themselves and grow. Focusing investment on small businesses makes New York City’s economy stronger and fairer for everyone.”

New York City has established a Small Business Support Center in Jamaica, Queens that offers business owners in-person support from multiple City agencies. Nearly 32,000 services have been provided to small businesses through the center. The NYC Business Portal allows business owners to track licenses, permits, and violations in one place. The portal boasts nearly 3 million visits since June 2016.

“I’m proud to partner with fellow City agencies to reduce the burden of bureaucracy and promote equity of access for the City’s over 230,000 small businesses,” said Gregg Bishop, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business Services. “Together, we’re demonstrating that New York City is open for business.”


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