SBA Nebraska District Office Newsletter - Your Small Business Connection

Nebraska District Office  - March 2022

Your Small Business Connection

Vol 10

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BREAKING NEWS

SBA Nebraska District Office Welcomes New Leadership!

We are excited to welcome two new staff members to the SBA Nebraska family this quarter! Versie Lark was been appointed by President Joe Biden as the Regional Administrator of Region 7 (Great Plains) last month, and Tim Mittan joined the team as the new District Director in January.

Versie Lark

Versie Lark brings a wealth of experience in business and in helping others prosper to his new position overseeing five district offices in the states of Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas and Iowa. Lark is a small business venture capital and angel investor, author and champion for small business owners. He recently retired from DST Systems of Kansas City, Missouri, where he led a billion-dollar line of business providing solutions to firms in finance, banking, brokerage and retirement investment industries. 

Lark has held various executive leadership roles for Fortune 1000 companies during his 35-year career. He currently serves on several boards, including Avila University, Wright State University's Engineering Council, Kansas City Missouri's Emerging Technology Council, and the Heartland Black Chamber of Commerce, among others. Lark holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Wright State University, and he is proud to be husband to Lisa, his wife of over 30 years, and father to his son and daughter.

Tim Mittan

Tim Mittan brings many years of economic development experience to his role in leading the SBA Nebraska District Office. His is also a Nebraska native, and most recently was an Economics and Entrepreneurship Instructor at Southeast Community College in Lincoln. He has been with SCC off and on for 20 years, taking a short break to work in Southern California where he was the Associate Director for the Los Angeles Regional Small Business Development Center Network, where he oversaw operations for the Lead Center hosted by Long Beach City College and the service centers in the LA SBDC network.

Over the past 17 years, Mittan has had extensive participation in entrepreneurship education and economic development. In that time, he helped create entrepreneur education at SCC, and successfully created, launched, and ran the SCC Entrepreneurship Center and Focus Suites and helped launch several businesses throughout Nebraska. In his free time, Mittan directs a local improv comedy troupe, Occasionally Hilarious! and teaches introductory and advanced level improv classes.


Get Ready for SBA's National Small Business Week!

NSBW 2022

For almost two years, America’s small businesses have faced uncertainty, disruptions and hardships on an unprecedented scale. Yet, they have overcome challenges and achieved hard-won successes, innovating and creating to find new ways to serve customers, support workers and sustain our communities.

SBA's 2022 National Small Business Week is all about celebrating how these small businesses have overcome enormous challenges in the past two years. This year's Virtual Summit is co-hosted by SCORE, and consists of 4 days of free educational programming followed by the Winners' Celebration where the National Small Business Person of the Year is named, among other awards.

Click here to register, view the agenda, and find out more information about this exciting week of activities! 

 


Join the NBDC Procurement Technical Assistance Center on April 19 & 20 For Their Meet The Buyer's Conference!

Meet The Buyers Conference

Register now for the 2022 Meet the Buyers Conference hosted by the Nebraska PTAC! This two-day government contracting conference includes trainings and networking opportunities for companies interested in selling to government agencies and large prime contractors. The conference will feature a variety of participating agencies, including: Kiewit, Union Pacific, NE Dept of Transportation, University of NE Procurement, Department of Veterans Affairs, GSA, Offutt Air Force Base, City of Omaha and more!

The cost for both dates of the conference is $50, which includes access to the virtual trainings on Tuesday, April 19, as well as the in-person networking session on Wednesday, April 20. Lunch and refreshments on April 20 will be included in the ticket price.

Please contact Daniel Kuchar with the Nebraska Business Development Center PTAC at dckuchar@unomaha.edu or 402-853-3933 with any questions you have.


Lenders' Lounge

Wondering How to Make Electronic Payments and Check Your EIDL Balance?

It's easy! Borrowers wishing to make electronic payments on their existing EIDL loans can create an account on Pay.Gov, which is the secure way to pay U.S. Federal Government Agencies. Please note that due to privacy restrictions, Pay.Gov does not offer access to your specific loan information. It is a way to make electronic payments only. While you don't need an account to make a payment, it is recommended that you create one so that you can set up recurring payments and track payments. Once you have an account, you will fill out the form to create a "SBA 1201 Borrower Payment," where you can then make a one-time payment or set up recurring payments.

In order to access specific SBA EIDL information such as interest accrual and payoff balance, you will need to create an account in the SBA's Capital Access Financial System. Once you have an account, you can access information like your pay-off balance and date, accrued interest and current balance.


Contracting Corner

Procurement Scorecard

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman is applauding major reforms being made by the Biden-Harris Administration to level the playing field for all contracting entrepreneurs through a more equitable federal procurement system and buying strategy:             

“President Biden issued a powerful challenge in Tulsa earlier this year to harness the buying power of the U.S. government—the largest purchaser of goods and services in the world—to invest in equity and open doors of opportunity to America’s 32.5 million small businesses and innovative startups, including many more underrepresented entrepreneurs and small businesses in underserved communities,” said Administrator Guzman. “[The] historic release of federal contracting data disaggregated by race, ethnicity, and geography, and our corresponding reforms to federal strategic sourcing strategies known ‘category management,’ will help guarantee greater transparency and accountability in federal contracting and put more small businesses in a position to start doing business with the United States government.”

Among the key policy modifications recommended and advocated for by the SBA are changes to the government’s approach to encourage and score 24 federal agencies to bundle contracts. Over the last five years, this system, called Category Management, has favored major corporations and made far too many contracts out of reach for small businesses, which has a far-reaching impact on the U.S. economy. Today’s changes will help increase contracting opportunities for over 30,000 underserved small businesses and give America’s 32.5 million small businesses a seat at the table by making the SBA a voting member of the Category Management Leadership Council, the interagency governing body that oversees contract bundling activities.

“As a first step to creating meaningful change, the SBA and its Office of Government Contracting and Business Development have worked closely with the White House, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Department of Defense to lead the effort across all of government to reform category management, the federal government’s buying strategy for managing the purchase of goods and services,” [said] Bibi Hidalgo, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Government Contracting and Business Development.  “These reforms, which take place immediately, will ensure agencies are not docked for contracting with a socioeconomic business and will begin to reverse the decline of our small business industrial contracting base. We know that small businesses are agile and innovative, and we must continue to widen the door of opportunity so that all federal agencies can take full advantage of the talents and ideas in every corner of the contracting community.”


Apply For COVID EIDL Increases While Funding Remains

eidl

Small business owners who want to request an increase to their current COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans have two years from the date of their initial loan or until the program runs out of funds to do so. The two year mark for many loan recipients is coming up quickly and the remaining funds in the program continue to decrease. Applicants have two ways to request an increase: they can do so via their SBA COVID EIDL portal or by emailing a request for an increase to CovidEIDLIncreaseRequests@sba.gov.  More information on the SBA COVID EIDL Program can be found here.

 


Marketing Minute

Having a solid online presence isn't just about having a great website. It's about getting found when customers use an online search engine. If your Nebraska roofing business isn't showing up when a customer does a Google search for "Nebraska roofing businesses," then you need a better Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plan! Check out this SCORE blog post to learn how to build one!