May 15, 2018
Meeting was called to order by Matthew Rainwater at 7:30am. Lindsey Schromen-Wawrin led the flag salute.
Ted Simpson moved to approve May 8 minutes, Jack Glaubert seconded. Motion carried.
George announced nationwide Bike Everywhere Month. Bike to Lefties and his group will watch the bikes. Annual race down Dry Hill went well with riders from around the state and internationally. The new BMX track was also very well done.
Meet EDC Board of Directors on May 21 @ 5:30-7:00pm at BarHop. Lindsey announced the next City Council meeting.
Kevin H. is running the government affairs meeting right after this morning’s meeting.
Program: Kevin Hoult, SBDC
SBDC helps entrepreneurs develop plans, refinance and find funding. Contact is made by email, in person and by phone. Kevin has access to university research important to business development, including export information. Most surprising is people calling asking about buying/selling a business. Top incoming questions are about financing, start up, marketing, then buy/sell.
A contract with the Port means SBDC provides them support with trades tenants and WSU research. SBDC participated in EDCC events, job fairs, and West End business fairs. 40K+/year visitors to Forks for Twilight Museum, mostingly in the spring/fall for rainy weather. Minimum wage and HR workshops, county outreach, port contacts, walk-ins, phone and email helped accomplish his Q1 mission. Sandwich stand, SEAP applicants, paid sick leave, independent contractors, reposer a vessel, help with new DOR website, chiropractic practice, business entity formation are examples of assistance provided. L&I and DOR have local offices here where not many other cities do. Local entrepreneurs sometimes focus is much on county challenges that they fail to see our opportunities. We’re more of an island than a peninsula. “See the gorilla in the room.”
2018 will be a year of change. Commercial lenders are doing deals, small businesses are automating and eliminating staff due to voters’ I-1433, staff being retained are getting raises to assure job satisfaction during wage compression and labor shortages. SBDC is a program of SBA managed by WSU. Kevin has an annual work plan, semi-annual all state staff meetings, quarterly performance reviews, and follows a code of conduct.
Kevin hasn’t had many calls from old Nippon workers about opening their own business, possibly waiting for their old jobs back. Homeless are included in his clientele. WorkSource can provide information about government retraining. In demand occupations are what workforce council gears training towards. If someone can prove a needed training outcome, they may add it. Atlas Trucking was affected by closing of Nippon. $2M in loans SBDA helped fund was SBA refi, SBA 7A and traditional commercial loan.
Kaj moved to extend the meeting up to 15 minutes. Deb F. seconded. Motion passed.
Low loans, $25K, are undesirable by banks, not worth paperwork. COIN and Craft3 as non-traditional lenders fills that void. Karen Westwood from Dollars and Cents in Sequim and LION in Port Townsend, also. About 2/3 of his time results in people realizing their business plans are not sustainable. SEAP claims continue for 26 weeks, job search forgiven. Opportunity zone may help reinvest money in the county. Business succession challenges are break even not being attractive to finance, the price owners want for the business, poor record keeping and incorrect value proposition.
May 22: Kevin Van De Wege – State Senator
May 29: No meeting
Meeting adjourned at 8:45am.