Kansas City has joined a national effort to streamline the process of registering and licensing a new business for entrepreneurs.
The City of Fountains has pledged to the White House and Small Business Administration to make launching a business an easier process via the “Startup in a Day” initiative.
“Navigating the maze of licensing and permitting can be difficult, especially for different types of companies,” said Maria Meyers, executive director of KCSourceLink. “I applaud any effort to streamline the process. Businesses will gravitate toward areas that are easy to do business with.”
In addition to cutting “red tape,” the 11 cities participating in the effort have vowed to create an online tool by the end of the year that will enable most entrepreneurs to apply to create a business within one day for regulatory approval. In addition the cities will create an unencumbered online permitting system, share best practices amongst the group and encourage other cities to hop on board.
Greg Kratofil, a technology and business attorney at Polsinelli PC, said that the decision to uproot one’s life to launch a business is already difficult enough. Burdensome applications and an arduous permitting process should not be heaped on top, too, he added.
“Any time we can shine the light on red tape that creates friction in starting a new business is a good first step,” he said. “The decision to leave a job or spend your life savings to startup a new business is extremely difficult. It is often only done after encouragement and support from a lot of family and friends. After that decision is made, one of the first things an entrepreneur encounters is the frustrating and time-consuming permitting and licensing process. This process can be discouraging for the person transitioning from employee to the owner. We need to make it as encouraging as possible.”
The cities and those that join the effort may enter two SBA competitions to foster development of the online tools. The first challenge — the “Start Small Model” competition — will award up to 25 prizes of up to $50,000 each for cities. The “Dream Big Model” competition will challenge cities to develop an open source Startup in a Day tool that can be replicated in other locales. Winners will snag up to $250,000
Other cities joining the effort include:
- Boise, Idaho ID
- Boston, Mass.
- Chattanooga, Tenn.
- Denver, Colo.
- Nashville, Tenn.
- San Francisco, Calif
- Petersburg, Fla.
- Salt Lake City, Utah
- Seattle, Wash.
- Washington D.C.