Tools and Tips: New Online Courses, a New CEO at NFIB and More

The Small Business Administration has added a couple of new online courses, including "Downshifting in a Slowing Economy: A Business Planning Guide." That course is designed to help business owners reorganize and streamline business strategies. Other tools include a new automated business plan template, and an assessment and strategies guide for surviving in a sluggish economy. The agency also offers resources to small firms that are uncertain about what actions to take in the current economy.

In other SBA news, the agancy is hosting National Small Business Week in Washington, D.C., May 18-22. Not many details are available yet, but they will be rolled out at www.nationalsmallbusinessweek.com.

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The Washington D.C. Economic Partnership will release the Asian editions of the "Doing Business in D.C. Guide Book" on Jan. 28. The free manual, distributed to local universities, business resources providers and foreign embassies, has been translated into Mandarin, Korean and Vietnamese. It is already available in English and Spanish. To register for the book release event at the Chinatown Cultural Center taking place from 9:30 to 11 a.m., please click here or contact Natalie Cofield at ncofield@wdcep.com or 202-661-8679.

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As of Jan. 1, the D.C. government requires all businesses that pay business taxes to have a valid D.C. Basic Business License. The D.C. government estimates 12,000 unlicensed businesses will be required to obtain a General Business License. The Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs has created an information page to assist with compliance.

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Making Cents International, a group dedicated to youth enterprise, is looking for sponsors for the February publication of "State of the Field in Youth Enterprise Employment and Livelihoods Development: Market-Driven Approaches; Monitoring, Evaluation, and Impact Assessment; and Youth Financial Services." It will include toolkits, portals and learning events related to youth enterprise, employment and livelihood development.

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The National Federation of Independent Business has named Dan Danner to replace Todd Stottlemyer as its next president and CEO. Stottlemyer is returning to the private sector on Feb 1. Danner currently oversees the group's public policy and political activities, as well as its non-profit operations: Research Foundation, Small Business Legal Center and Young Entrepreneur Foundation.

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The IRS announced that taxpayers in four states will file to different processing centers this year. Taxpayers in Delaware, New York and Rhode Island will now send their tax returns to the IRS Kansas City Service Center in Kansas City, Mo. Taxpayers in Illinois will now send their tax returns to the IRS Fresno Service Center, in Fresno, Calif. E-filers in those states will experience no changes.

By Sharon McLoone |  January 22, 2009; 12:10 PM ET
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