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Small businesses are the backbone of our Nation and Maine’s economy, and it is import ant to have these businesses prosper.

Hello. This is Governor Paul LePage.

There are more than 40-thousand small businesses in Maine. They provide a very large percentage of jobs in our state. But even more Mainers are employed by micro-enterprises.

Micro-enterprises are businesses that employ fewer than 5 employees, and they certainly have the potential to grow into larger companies.

We have about 130-thousand microbusinesses in Maine that employ 170-thousand people. If they each add one more job, that would have a major impact on Maine’s economy.

This week I had the opportunity to meet with several micro-entrepreneurs. We talked about the opportunities and challenges facing small business in Maine.

Any business owner knows how hard it is to start, manage, market and grow a business. We want to help make it a little easier.

The State of Maine has a variety of helpful resources, including the Business Answers Hotline within the Department of Economic and Community Development, as well as the Maine Small Business Development Centers, which provides business management advice and education.

Our Administration will continue to work on issues such as access to capital and the availability of broadband internet in rural areas. We’re now working with the Finance Authority of Maine to improve access to start-up funding for micro-business owners, and we have collaborated with the Connect ME Authority to expand the internet in rural parts of the State.

Although more than 90 percent of Maine has connectivity, we are still deficient in many rural areas. And those areas have aspiring entrepreneurs.

Nicole Snow is an amazing young woman who is a shining example of a micro-entrepreneur. She lives in the small town of Sebec, and in 2008 Nicole decided to create her own business. The result is “Darn Good Yarn,” a yarn and fiber importer, wholesaler, and retailer. And let me tell you, this is becoming a booming million dollar business today, thanks to the internet.

Government cannot create private sector jobs, what it can create is good policy that supports our growing businesses. Higher taxes won’t help new start-up or growing microbusinesses in Maine. We need a business-friendly environment in which businesses small and large can thrive and create more good jobs.

Micro-businesses may be small, but they can have a big impact on families and our economy. As your Governor, I want you, your children and grandchildren to call Maine home and become prosperous.

Micro-businesses can help you achieve that prosperity and success. We encourage Maine’s tradition of small entrepreneurs to continue to grow and prosper, and we are here to help.

For more information, call our Business Answers Hotline at 1-800-872-3838.

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