THE City of Melville has been recognised as a Small Business Friendly Local Government.
Developed by the Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC), the initiative recognises local governments committed to supporting small businesses in their area.
To promote small business, acting Melville chief executive Steve Cope said the City had developed a dedicated business hub on its website, released regular Business Matters e-newsletters, held an annual business forum and ran regular business workshops.
“Since 2016 the City has made sound progress in terms of supporting local business guided by both our community and corporate plans to achieve growth and prosperity,” he said.
Small Business Commissioner and SBDC chief executive David Eaton said acknowledging the importance of small businesses, which employ 40 per cent of the private sector workforce in WA, was something he would “bore people to death with until they take me out of this job”.
“(Local governments) engage with small businesses more often than anybody else and you actually carry a burden of regulations cascading down from other tiers of government,” he said.
“Rather than join in the burden, we thought we’d recognise better practice local governance.”
He said the City had treated businesses like customers – helping them comply with regulations, offering a simple dispute resolution process and run economic development activities.
In a recent survey of 106 businesses, 96 per cent rated the City positively as a place to operate.
But there was still work to do with just one in three (34 per cent) businesses believing the City had a good understanding of issues facing them.