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04/30/2005 - BIZStreet Resource Center Grand Reopening

The BIZStreet Resource Center which will have its grand reopening on May 3 is a model of good things that can happen when agencies work together. BIZStreet is the former Business Information Center (BIC) in the Spokane Regional Business Center at 801 W Riverside. The BIC began life as a Small Business Administration (SBA) information tool to help budding entrepreneurs, existing businesses in need, and students of all sorts. The original BIC housed an excellent business library, a computer lab, the SBA training room, and SCORE – Counselors to America’s Small Business. SBA employees staffed the library. It was an exemplary facility.

This past year, due to the federal budget crunch, the SBA cut all BIC’s in United States from their budget, and “abandoned” the libraries and resources that they contained. SBA also eliminated BIC staffing. Spokane’s BIC was of such high quality that various agencies banded together to keep the resource open and operating. The Spokane Regional Chamber of Commerce took the lead, and after a few months of study and planning, the renamed BIZStreet Resource Center is back in full swing.

The library is still there, as is SCORE and the SBA training room, but several other Spokane resource agencies also have a point-of-presence. Spokane Regional Chamber's PTAC (Procurement Technical Assistance Center), and AHANA have offices in the BIZStreet. Spokane's Economic Development Council (EDC), SNAP (Spokane Neighborhood Action Project), and TINCAN (The Inland Northwest Community Access Network) are resource partners. Other resource partners include SNEDA, (Spokane Neighborhood Economic Development Association), BBB (Better Business Bureau), and SBDC (Small Business Development Center.) The SBA, SCORE, and BIZStreet use the facility for regularly presented workshops and loan briefings. Outreach includes the Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Post Falls Chamber of Commerce.

Possibly the most important contribution by the Spokane Chamber was underwriting new BIZStreet Coordinator, Dawn Burns. Budding entrepreneurs are swarming into BIZStreet to do library research, attend loan briefings or business management workshops, or to tap the expertise of business counselors. Dawn shepherds them all.

The Grand Reopening open house of the BIZStreet Resource Center is on May 3, 2005 at 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. BIZStreet is at 801 W Riverside Avenue, Suite 240. All are invited. There will be many representatives from resource partners SCORE, SNAP, SNEDA, TINCAN, SBDC, and BBB

For more information about the BIZStreet Resource Center, visit www.bizstreetresourcecenter.biz.

Billie Moreland
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