A state legislator wants an interim committee to look at whether there are overlaps or gaps among organizations and programs designed to help small and mid-size Utah companies.
Rep. Sheryl Allen, R-Bountiful, told the Business and Labor Interim Committee this week that it should review the Business Resource Centers program, Small Business Development Centers, Jobs Now, Custom Fit Training programs, manufacturing extension partnerships and other programs for "potential overlap in functions, performance measures and the use of state resources allocated" to each of them.
"In my career, we haven't compared one program to another and how much are they overlapping," she said. "I think it would be an appropriate thing for this committee to study."
The committee's co-chairman, Rep. Stephen Clark, R-Provo, backed Allen's proposal. "I've been battling this for a long time and I'm happy to have somebody on my team now," Clark told Allen.
Clark said Utah County has at least 50 economic development organizations, some of which are funded by state and federal government and some of which are private entities.
"They're trying to help business small, large, emerging and so on be successful," he said. "We're all doing the same thing, but nobody knows who has responsibility for whom as far as the various businesses in the area."Clark noted that business resource centers could help with the effort, but recently legislation funded only one center as a pilot program.