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Regional specialists play a vital role in matching small businesses with state resources

md-general-assembly_e-1To better serve all kinds of businesses across the state, the Maryland Department of Commerce (Commerce) employs a team of experts. This team not only includes specialists in unique industry sectors like manufacturing and cybersecurity, but also a group that focuses on the strengths and needs of each geographic area of the state.

Commerce has 12 regional business development representatives across Maryland. Some might be responsible for two or three adjacent counties, while others might focus on just one of the more densely-populated jurisdictions, but their main goal is to provide businesses with information on Commerce’s and other state programs and resources that might best fit their needs.

Every day, these reps are building relationships in the local business community, keeping in close touch with local officials and economic development organizations to resolve issues and help businesses expand, and serving as Commerce’s “boots on the ground.”

“Our regional reps are vitally important to Commerce’s mission to ensure that Maryland “Open for Business,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “Because they are embedded in their regions, they understand the unique challenges and opportunities of each county and can help match businesses with state resources, as well as help resolve issues that prevent businesses from growing.”

The regional representatives also help celebrate when businesses in their areas reach important milestones, such as a major anniversary or the opening of a new location, often presenting an official citation from Commerce’s Secretary as a way to say thank you for investing and growing in Maryland.

They also represent Commerce on the recently launched Maryland Regional Resource Teams, staying in regular contact and sharing information with their counterparts in other agencies to make sure all of state government is working quickly and efficiently to meet the needs of their communities.

Visit Commerce’s website to find your regional business development specialist.
http://commerce.maryland.gov/commerce

Maryland’s new Regional Resources Team
Earlier this year, Governor Larry Hogan announced the launch of Maryland’s new Regional Resources team and webpage. The team is made up of the state agencies that interact with the business community the most and works to assist businesses and local jurisdictions with a variety of issues, including transportation, workforce development, licensing, planning, and permitting, among others.

The regional resources team is the latest in a series of initiatives designed to make state government easier and more efficient to navigate, as well as more customer friendly. Instead of businesses having to call a number of different state agencies to resolve an issue, the regional resources team offers a “one-stop shop” where a team will focus on addressing a specific issue.

Need to find your regional resources team members? Check out the Maryland Regional Resources webpage, housed on the Maryland Business Express website, which offers an easy-to-navigate state map with agency contacts for each region. https://businessexpress.maryland.gov/grow/regional-resources

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Expanding Opportunities

This article is featured in the 2019 edition of The Daily Record’s Expanding Opportunities Resource Guide for Small, Minority and Women Businesses. Published in conjunction with the Governor’s Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs, Expanding Opportunities explores diversity, entrepreneurship and innovation in Maryland’s small business community. Read more from Expanding Opportunities on this website or read the digital edition.

To purchase a reprint of this article, contact reprints@thedailyrecord.com.

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