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NYC Council Passes Bill to Support Small Business

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On Thursday, the NYC Council approved a bill to reduce Big Apple's "bureaucratic maze" of rules required to start and run a small business. Additionally, the bill, sponsored by City Councilwoman Julie Menin (D-Upper East Side), passed unanimously in the court.  Furthermore, if Mayor Eric Adams signs the bill into law, it might simplify the complex procedure the city's small businesses go through to obtain the necessary permits and licenses. According to Menin, a former restaurant owner, "Businesses say New York City government stands in the way of them being able to effectively operate their business by creating a bureaucratic maze of red tape." NYC Council Moreover, the proposed bill would establish an online "One Stop Shop" portal that would enable small businesses to submit information on a single website instead of the current requirement to coordinate with numerous organizations. In addition, they will be able to examine the status of applications and approvals in one place, thanks to the platform.

More details on the new bill for small businesses

Currently, depending on the type of occupation, city businesses must check off over 5,000 rules and regulations as well as 200 business-related licenses and permits to comply with the law. For instance, before receiving approval, applicants must complete 56 different steps involving 12 separate in-person interactions to start a barber shop. According to NYC Hospitality Alliance's executive director Andrew Rigie, "regulatory reform is badly needed." NYC Council In a statement, he said: "Running a restaurant in NYC requires small business owners to navigate a big bureaucracy, an alphabet soup of separate regulatory agencies such as DOH, DOB, DEP, FDNY, and DCWP, each with their own permits, requirements, and systems." Furthermore, Menin argued that the drawn-out procedure should also be simplified because it makes it harder for business owners already having trouble recovering from the devastating COVID-19 outbreak. She noted, "We haven't done nearly enough to support our small businesses, and yet they are the backbone of our city – it's so dysfunctional, and we wonder why one-third of our city's small businesses have closed during the pandemic! COVID taught us that we can conduct almost any interaction online." Lastly, if Mayor Adams approve the new bill,  the city's Small Business Services would need to create the system by November 2023.

By Alberto Mesti

Introvert. Eccentric at times. A fashion enthusiast, designer and writer. Lives for the drama, hates being at the centre of it. Can be best described as \'wannabe modern day Lady Whistledown\'.


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