Great Seal of the State of Idaho


News Release

January 28, 2010

CONTACT: Jon Hanian
(208) 334-2100


           (BOISE) – Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter announced today that he will host a Small Business Summit this spring to hear firsthand about the unique challenges facing a critically important segment of Idaho’s economy, and the solutions that the men and women running Idaho’s small businesses have in mind.

           The Governor’s Small Business Summit, scheduled for Tuesday, April 13th, from 8 a.m. to noon in the 6th floor Skyline Room of Boise State University’s Stueckle Sky Center, comes two days before the tax filing deadline – an annual watershed date for small businesses and individuals alike.

           “It’s no coincidence that we’re having this summit when taxes are on people’s minds.  They are a big factor in the operation of any small business, and I expect that to be among the issues we discuss,” Governor Otter said. “More than any other sector of our economy, small businesses are where the magic of the free market works – where Adam Smith’s ‘Invisible Hand’ is most visible. They are where jobs are created and opportunities are realized, so we need to hear about their challenges and their solutions. Everything from worker’s compensation to health insurance and from workforce needs to State regulation will be on the table.”

           The Governor, Lieutenant Governor Brad Little and Department of Commerce Director Don Dietrich will preside at the listening session patterned on the Governor’s Business, Innovation and Finance summits in recent months. The Small Business Summit will coincide with the quarterly meeting of the Idaho Economic Advisory Council, and will feature five four-member panels of small business representatives from Northern Idaho, North-Central Idaho, Southwestern Idaho, the Magic Valley, and Eastern Idaho.

           “It’s clear that the Governor recognizes the importance of small businesses to Idaho’s economy, and to our future. They are a primary engine of growth and employment, and government policies have a more direct and dramatic impact on them than most others,” said Billy Knorpp, president of DirectPOS in Boise and a member of the Idaho Leadership Council for the National Federation of Independent Business.

           “We look forward to this opportunity for our members to have the Governor’s ear, and to help inform his direction forward,” Knorpp said. 

           “Small business is the heartbeat of Idaho’s economy and provides one of the keys to economic prosperity now and into the future,” Idaho Speaker Lawerence Denney said. “Through this summit, we have an opportunity to listen to the real experts – the entrepreneurs who run small businesses and provide jobs. These are the people we should be looking to for solutions to some of the great challenges facing small businesses.”

           “I have participated in several of the Summit’s hosted and organized by Governor Otter and his staff,” Idaho Senate President Pro Tem Robert Geddes said. “These are a great and key opportunity for people to come and learn how to make small businesses more viable and successful.”

           The public is invited and encouraged to attend the summit, which will include brief presentations by small business panelists followed by a question-and-answer period with the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Director Dietrich. The discussion will result in an executive report and recommendations from the Department of Commerce on next steps.

           The Small Business Summit is part of Governor Otter’s Project 60 initiative to grow career-path job opportunities in Idaho and increase Idaho’s gross domestic product to $60 billion.

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