SBA Releases Strategic Plan for Comment

If you've ever felt like telling the Small Business Administration what it could do better, now is your chance.

The agency late last week released its strategic plan (pdf) for fiscal 2008 through 2012. The agency report outlines four strategic goals, which are largely similar to past SBA planning cycles, except it delves into areas that it seeks to improve. With 34 percent of the SBA's workforce eligible to retire by 2009, there are challenges ahead of it.

The agency's main goals are to expand the nation's "ownership society" with a focus on underserved markets, offer financial assistance to parties affected by disaster, improve the economic environment for small business and ensure "management and organizational excellence." The 39-page strategic plan also offers a framework for the agency to expand upon when it requests funding from Congress.

The SBA plan outlines a number of initiatives, such as intentions to increase the volume of agency-sanctioned loans, improve small business access to government contracts, respond quickly to applicants requesting funding that's related to a disaster such as a hurricane, and embrace new technologies to better serve any of the agency's 25 million small businesses. It also plans to better leverage its resource partners, such as centers across the nation designed to help small businesses, minorities and women.

The SBA is accepting public comments on the document through Sept. 10 via the SBA Web site or e-mail to performancereports@sba.gov.

By Sharon McLoone |  August 28, 2007; 9:50 AM ET Policymakers
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