Town Hall provides opportunity for businesses to share needs – Nevada Today

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As the COVID-19 surge continues, so do the challenges to small businesses associated with it. University of Nevada, Reno Extension will offer a free online town hall Wednesday, Dec. 16, to provide small businesses with a recap of the major business developments of 2020, and the adjustments for the new year business owners may need to consider as a result. Business owners are also encouraged to come prepared to share their unmet business needs, as well as their business successes. The English-language session will be at 9 a.m., and the Spanish-language session will be at 2:30 p.m.

“Especially now, as businesses look to starting the new year, they need to be mindful of all that’s transpired this year – changes in consumer behavior, regulations, loans – as they plan for next year,” said Buddy Borden, economic development specialist with Extension’s Business Development Program. “We think it can spur some thought and discussion resulting in them making some small adjustments that can help their bottom line in the new year.”

Borden says that besides the panel of experts from government and various organizations sharing information at this “2020 Small-Business Recap” town hall, participants will be encouraged to share what they’ve learned this year, as well as what needs have and haven’t been met.

“One of the purposes of these town halls is to provide a networking opportunity, even amid COVID, so that small-business owners can brainstorm and share helpful information with each other,” Borden said. “And, as we wrap up this year, we also want to hear from business owners on which needs are being met and which aren’t, and what’s working and what isn’t, so that we can help relay this information and maybe make some changes to make things run smoother and fill some of the gaps.”

Panelists on hand for the 9 a.m., English-language session will include:

  • From the Nevada Department of Business and Industry – Marcel Schaerer, deputy director
  • From Prestamos – Noe Gonzalez, senior business advisor
  • From StartupNV/AngelNV – Jeff Saling, founder
  • From DreamSpring – Jeremy McVeety, community lending officer
  • From the State of Nevada – Angelia Yllas, workers’ compensation statewide enforcement chief
  • From Extension – Reyna Mendez and Juan Salas, business development instructors; and Mike Bindrup, research associate

Panelists on hand for the 2:30 p.m., Spanish-language session will include:

  • From the Small Business Administration – Alfredo Cedeño, outreach/marketing specialist
  • From the Nevada Department of Business and Industry – Miriam Hickerson, state ombudsman of consumer affairs for minorities
  • From DreamSpring – Jessica Lubbe, loan officer
  • From the State of Nevada – Angelia Yllas, workers’ compensation statewide enforcement chief
  • From Extension – Reyna Mendez and Juan Salas, business development instructors; and Mike Bindrup, research associate

The town halls usually run about an hour. To register:

Extension has been offering a series of online town halls and webinars for small businesses, “Coping With COVID-19,” since April. For more information, go to the Extension Business Development Program website. There are also other resources at the website to assist businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. For more information, email Borden.

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