April 2, 2016
By Tara Jessup
New York, NY – Nearly one-third of small business owners wait six months or longer for approvals they need from the City to open their business. Four in ten business workers have said they had to hire private expeditors to navigate City bureaucracy. This information was included in a survey released by the New York City Comptroller as part of a year-long Red Tape Commission.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our City’s economy, but too often government is a barrier, not a partner, in helping them grow,” Comptroller Stringer said. “When it takes months on end to get permits and half of business owners don’t feel like they get a fair shake from the City, it’s time to take a sledgehammer to the bureaucracy.”
The Red Tape Commission listened to scores of small business owners at hearings in all five boroughs. The results indicated an unfriendly New York City. Business owners generally have difficulty navigating city government.
Findings from an online survey noted that: Small businesses suffer from painfully slow approval processes. There is lack of fairness and poorly communicated information. Broad dissatisfaction with City agencies exists in every category of business. Private “expeditors” are often needed to navigate the city buracracy.
“Small business owners deserve better than this,” Stringer said. “If we want to expand economic opportunity and give every New Yorker a fair chance to make it in our City, we need to cut the red tape that is holding small businesses back.”