Mayor Jenny Durkan Celebrates One Year of the Small Business Advisory Council, Signs Executive Order Directing City to Bolster Support for Small Businesses

Executive Order will conduct study exploring relief of taxes and fees for small businesses, re-establish a City-wide Business Advocacy Team, and study an employment pipeline to connect youth and adults to small business jobs.

Seattle (November 30, 2018) – On the first anniversary of the creation of the City’s first-ever Small Business Advisory Council (SBAC), Mayor Jenny A. Durkan stood with members of the Council as she signed an Executive Order to help small businesses thrive in Seattle.

Small businesses with fewer than 50 employees provide nearly 200,000 jobs in Seattle.

“Inventing the future and fostering vibrant neighborhoods means supporting the small businesses that call Seattle home. Our small businesses must be a part of solving our urgent challenges of affordability and growth. One year ago today, I created the City’s first-ever Small Business Advisory Council to help ensure the voices of small business are heard before we enact the policies and legislation that directly impact them,” said Mayor Durkan. “Small businesses are an economic engine for Seattle, and we have a responsibility to break down barriers so they can continue to provide good-paying jobs and thrive.”

The Executive Order, which was informed by policy recommendations made by the members of the Small Business Advisory Council, will take three key steps to support Seattle’s small business owners and employees:

  1. Direct the City Budget Office to study ways to reduce the impact of taxes and fees on small businesses, explore a possible holiday from the B&O tax, and look for others ways to support small business employees; and,
  2. Immediately re-establish the Citywide Business Advocacy Team (CBAT) to reduce bureaucracy, increase support for workers, and better help Seattle small businesses navigate government. The CBAT’s first task, in conjunction with SBAC, will be to develop a “Welcome Packet” for new small businesses that provides a comprehensive guide for information on the permitting process, labor standards, taxes and fees, and support resources; and,
  3. Direct the Office of Economic Development to study options for connecting small businesses with trained Seattle youth seeking employment and adults seeking career development and retraining programs. The study will address eligibility requirements, training resources, and participation incentives for businesses.

“The Small Business Advisory Council has created a voice for small businesses that seemed to be missing in City Hall. Over the course of a year, we’ve included our input on legislation moving through the City and have come up with ways the City can make doing business in Seattle a little easier for small businesses. I’m looking forward to seeing what we can get done next year and in the future with the help of Mayor Durkan and the City Council,” said Rachel Marshall, owner of Rachel’s Ginger Beer and member of the Small Business Advisory Council.

On November 30, 2017, Mayor Durkan established the Small Business Advisory Council to guide the City’s development of policies and give small business owners a voice at City Hall. The SBAC is composed of a cross-cultural mix of City leaders and business owners from across sectors and industries and represents businesses of varying size, stage, and structure. The members of the SBAC will serve a two-year term and include:

  • Co-Chair Joe Fugere, Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria
  • Co-Chair Taylor Hoang, Cyclo Corp., Ethnic Business Coalition
  • Co-Chair Donna Moodie, Marjorie Restaurant, Mint Holding
  • Co-Chair Tracy Taylor, Elliott Bay Book Company
  • Maryan Abdulle, Nasib Family Child Care
  • Zewditu Aschenaki, Salon Adidez
  • Joey Burgess, Queer/Bar, Grim’s Provisions and Spirits
  • Shaiza Damji, Hotel Nexus
  • Solomon Dubie, Café Avole
  • Annette Heide-Jessen, Kaffeeklatsch
  • Edouardo Jordan, Salare Restaurant, JuneBaby
  • Lacey Leavitt, Electric Dream Factory
  • Elise Lindborg, ZippyDogs LLC
  • Rachel Marshall, Rachel’s Ginger Beer
  • Michael Megalli, indie.biz
  • Debbie Millard, Ballard Oil Company
  • Molly Moon, Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream
  • Linda Morton, Terra Plata
  • Gayle Nowicki, Gargoyles Statuary
  • Kamala Saxton, Marination
  • Lei Ann Shiramizu, Momo
  • Leigh Stone, Crybaby Studios
  • Gail Stringer, Hawaii General Store
  • Chuck Wang, Stage
  • Edwin Wanji, Sphere Solar Energy
  • Beto Yarce, Ventures
  • Lara Zahaba, Stoup Brewing
  • Councilmember Lisa Herbold (ex officio)
  • Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (ex officio)