After what some legislators described as “months of collaboration,” Rhode Island Governor Donald Carcieri has signed a package of small business assistance programs into law.
Among the ideas included in the bill is the creation of a $125-million loan guarantee program, which will help improve access to credit for existing small business owners and those looking to start a corporation.
“I have never seen leaders come together so fast to embrace something they knew would be good for Rhode Island,” Secretary of State A. Ralph Mollis told Providence Business News.
The legislation also provides an increase in funding for workforce training programs at the Community College of Rhode Island and creates a program to help Ocean State businesses win valuable government contracts.
Rhode Island has seen consistently poor unemployment figures over the last few months, especially among younger workers. As PBN reports, a recent study by Northeastern University found that while the state’s overall unemployment rate stood at 12.3 percent last month, the jobless rate among 18- to 24-year-old workers was approximately 18 percent.
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