State policymakers, legislative issues on tap for BIA’s Small Business Day

Jan. 24 Concord event will also feature ACA discussion, business resource info

Small Business Day, an annual event presented by the Business and Industry Association of New Hampshire that gives business owners and managers a chance to hear the state’s top policymakers and learn more about legislative issues that concern them, is set for Friday, Jan. 24, at the Holiday Inn in Concord.

Presented by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the event is sponsored by TD Bank, Usource and media sponsor New Hampshire Business Review. The event will be from 7:30 a.m. to noon.

Small Business Day – which is also held in partnership with the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center, the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development and local and regional chambers of commerce and business associations — is meant to engage small business owners and managers in public policy discussion and debate, as well as provide them with practical and relevant information to help manage and grow their business.

Small Business Day will begin with opening remarks from Gov. Maggie Hassan, followed by a panel discussion some of the state’s top elected leaders: Senate Democratic Leader Sylvia Larsen; Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Andy Sanborn; House Majority Leader Stephen Shurtleff; and House Republican Leader Gene Chandler. The state leadership panel will focus specifically on top small business issues of 2014 and how state elected leaders will resolve them.

Three educational sessions will follow the legislative panel.

The first, “Vital Resources for Growing Your Small Business,” moderated by Chris Way, deputy director of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development, will feature panelists Steve Webb, TD Bank; Mary Collins, Small Business Development Center; and Angela Martin, Devine Millimet. They will discuss essential resources to the success of a small business, including free legal help for start-ups, financing options, marketing strategies and tactics to improve profitability.

The next session, “The ACA and Beyond: Navigating the New Health Insurance Landscape,” will cover new strategies and opportunities for meeting a company’s healthcare and health insurance needs in the post-ACA economy. Small businesses are challenged with navigating the complex and ever-changing health insurance landscape, particularly now that the Affordable Care Act is fully in effect and plans in the new online marketplaces kicked in January 1. Panelists Marie Proulx of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Steve Gerlach of Bernstein Shur will discuss what small businesses need to know in 2014 and beyond.

In the final panel, small business owners will learn more about the BIA’s recently released strategic economic plan for New Hampshire, which aimed at capitalizing on the state’s strengths and addressing its weaknesses.

Participating chambers of commerce and business organizations include the Exeter Area, Greater Derry-Londonderry, Greater Hillsborough Area, Greater Keene, Greater Peterborough, Greater Salem, Hampton Area, Hanover Area, Lake Sunapee Region, Lakes Region, Lincoln-Woodstock, Merrimack, Mount Washington Valley and Wolfeboro Area chambers of commerce and the Lakes Region Tourism Association.

Cost to attend Small Business Day is $15 per person and includes continental breakfast. To register, visit the events calendar at or call 603-224-5388, ext. 116.

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