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Archive for February, 2011

Division of Economic Development’s Duddy a “Newsmaker”

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Interim Director Roy Duddy was recently featured on Comcast’s Newsmakers program providing an overview of the resources available to entrepreneurs and small businesses in the state through the MyExpertNet initiative.

Host Jenny Johnson and Duddy discussed the many inquiries that are flowing into the site and how the new site is providing 24-hour access to experts for budding entrepreneurs, CEOs of existing companies and line workers alike. Duddy noted that technical assistance and resources needed to be computerized for better, more efficient support of these business professionals, and that it can be confusing to search for solutions on the Internet when you don’t know who to trust. So the state pre-qualified volunteers who would serve as experts on a wide array of topics and industry areas, to give expert answers that help people through their decision processes.

Go to http://www.MyExpertNet.org to connect with the expert business help you need, all free of charge. MyExpertnet was developed by the NH-based Knowledge Institute, in partnership with Comcast, the NH Division of Economic Development, PSNH, Unitil, and Centrix Bank.

When Does a Hobby Become a Business?

Monday, February 7th, 2011

Here’s New Hampshire Business Resource Center Seacoast Business Services Specialist Christine Davis’ newest Portsmouth Herald column that answers the often tricky question: When does a hobby become a business?

I received several questions this past week on a variety of topics related to owning a business.  It amazes me how much there is to know about business ownership and how little I actually know.  I guess we all feel that way some days and can be thankful for having the Internet and colleagues to go to for help.

New Hampshire Business Resource Center Seacoast Business Services Specialist Christine Davis

New Hampshire Business Resource Center Seacoast Business Services Specialist Christine Davis

Does a business need to make certain minimum revenue in order to be considered a business?  I am just doing this on the side and don’t expect to earn much the first year in operation.


The simple answer is no.  I went to www.irs.gov to get a more complete response for you and here is what they say:  Generally, an activity qualifies as a business if it is carried on with the reasonable expectation of earning a profit.  It gets a bit more complicated when you drill down to try and separate a hobby from a business as I learned from the site that you can actually deduct expenses from having a hobby.  Really.  I love this country.

NH is pretty easy as far as starting a business (assuming a permit isn’t required).  You can register through the State by visiting www.sos.nh.gov/corporate and downloading the appropriate forms.  The good thing about registering as a business, besides being a law-abiding citizen, is that you can deduct the expenses you incur that relate to your business.

I heard from another start-up this week:

Do I need to get a permit in order to start a photography business?  Also, do I file for a business name the same time that I file as an LLC?

I smiled when I heard this question as I had just returned from the Business & Industry Association’s “Small Business Day at the State House” and had learned that NH requires permits from over 90 different business industries.  I went to the following site, www.nh.gov/nhes/elmi/licertreg, to learn that while a Shampoo Assistant Apprentice does need to file for a license, a photographer does not. 

As far as reserving a business name and filing to become an LLC, you need to first file for the name to ensure the name is available.  This avoids needing to rewrite the articles of incorporation in the event that the name is not available.  If the name is available, it can be held for 120 days to allow time to prepare the necessary documents needed for incorporation.  More specific information can be found through the corporate division of the Secretary of State’s office website, www.sos.nh.gov.

I also wanted to thank those who wrote to me in response to the last article about health care costs and small businesses.  I heard from a reader who suggested businesses also look into wellness programs to reduce costs.  A healthier workforce will also be a more productive workforce.  You should talk to your provider about these options.  More information about the health care tax credit was requested and that can be found at the IRS website, www.irs.gov.  Just type, health care tax credit for small employers, to be directed to the appropriate page.

EAR & ITAR Licensing Issues Workshop to be Held

Friday, February 4th, 2011

Companies interested in shipping goods overseas are invited to attend an EAR and ITAR Licensing Issues workshop at the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development (172 Pembroke Road) on Thursday, February 17th from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

tradePresented by the New Hampshire International Trade Resource Center, this seminar will include a discussion of licensing issues affecting both non-military products (regulated by Export Administration Regulations – EAR) and military products (regulated by the International Traffic in Arms Regulations – ITAR).

This session is perfect for businesses trying to determine whether a license is needed for shipment of products overseas and how to use the correct Export Control Classification Numbers on export documents.

EAR licensing issues will be covered during the morning session from 9 a.m.-noon while the ITAR licensing session takes place between 1-3:30 p.m. Registrants may sign up for just the morning session, just the afternoon session or both. Both sessions will include lunch from 12-1 p.m.

The cost of single sessions is $55 while the cost to attend the entire day is $95. To register, please contact Ellie White at (603) 271-8444 or ellie.white@dred.state.nh.us.

More Than Wheels named 2011 Champion in Action

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

Citizens Bank New Hampshire and WMUR-TV have named More Than Wheels, formerly Bonnie CLAC, as their 2011 first quarter Champion in Action® in the economic development category.

As part of the award, More Than Wheels will receive a $25,000 grant, media coverage, and extensive promotional and volunteer support for its dedication and commitment to helping families and individuals improve their financial stability through the car-buying process.

more-than-wheels“Citizens Bank is pleased to join WMUR-TV in naming More Than Wheels as its newest Champion in Action,” said Cathleen A. Schmidt, President, Citizens Bank, New Hampshire. “More Than Wheels has been using a comprehensive financial educational program to help participants gain control of their finances for the past decade. We are proud to recognize its efforts in the community and help it continue to advance its programs and services.”

The Champions in Action program is designed to recognize and support nonprofit organizations for their contributions to New Hampshire communities. A new Champion in Action is selected each quarter among a range of social service areas.

“Sharing in this initiative with Citizens Bank continues to be a source of great pride,” said Jeff Bartlett, General Manager of WMUR-TV. “We are very pleased to help organizations across the state that demonstrate such a strong commitment to making a difference in the lives of so many New Hampshire residents. They truly are champions.”

More Than Wheels is the only nonprofit car organization in the country offering this type of financial services. Through group workshops and personalized counseling, participants develop a financial plan that includes rebuilding credit ratings, savings techniques and creating a household budget.  This process results in long lasting economic impacts including access to better employment and education opportunities and improved personal financial management habits.

“A car is not a luxury. It’s a necessity. It’s how people get to work, and get their children to a doctor’s appointment,” said More Than Wheels CEO Terri Steingrebe. “More Than Wheels combines the critical need for transportation with personal financial improvement and empowerment.”
Since its inception in 2001, More Than Wheels has served more than 1,400 people, arranging more than $14 million in loans. As a result of obtaining reliable and affordable transportation, many are able to improve their job prospects, their family’s health and well-being, and their overall financial stability. A total of 75 percent of participants reported spending less on car repairs and 73 percent reported a better overall financial outlook. Because the program requires hard work and diligent financial planning, the successful results have been life changing for those willing to see it through. 

As a Champion in Action, More Than Wheels will receive:
• A $25,000 contribution in unrestricted funds from the Citizens Bank Foundation.
• Media coverage from WMUR-TV, including public service announcements and television profiles.
• Volunteer support from Citizens and WMUR-TV employees.
• Extensive public relations support.
• Promotional support, highlighting the current Champion in Action in all Citizens Bank branches and on its ATMs.
• Exposure on both Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV websites.

“We are honored to be recognized by Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV as a Champion in Action,” said Steingrebe. “With their support, More Than Wheels will be able to champion change in our communities and improve the quality of life for many in need.”

A nonprofit organization supporting food and nutrition will be named the second quarter Champion in Action and will be announced in April 2011. 

For more information about the Champions in Action program, visit www.citizensbank.com or www.TheWMURChannel.com. To learn more about More Than Wheels, visit www.morethanwheels.org or call (866) 455-2522. More Than Wheels is located at 250 Commercial Street in Manchester, NH 03101.