The request was for $160,000. The Utah economic development Board's answer was $2,500.
Rather than provide the $160,000 to help form a Small Business Investment Corp. for small business, the board Tuesday voted to spend a maximum of $2,500 to pay for an expert on SBICs to come to utah and provide more information about their purpose and organization.SBICs are designed to provide money to small business to help them grow with long-term loans when they can't obtain funding from the traditional sources like banks, which in many instances don't make long term loans because of higher risks.
Salt Lake businessman Peter Cooke, chairman of the task force appointed by the Salt Lake Area Chamber of Commerce to study the feasibility of forming as SBIC, said he was disappointed with the board's decision, but would cooperate with any expert the board chose.
Cooke said there is and initiative under way in Utah to help small business, and the $160,000 grant from the board would have kept that initiative going. He said other sources of funding will be sought in the event no money comes from the board.
The idea of bringing an SBIC expert to Utah came from the board's Special Opportunities Fund Subcommittee. John Price, a Salt Lake businessman and a subcommittee member, said the formation of a SBIC is a good opportunity but isn't certain how far the state should be invloved.
In other action, the board voted to spend $57,500 from the Special Opportunities Fund with $15,000 each going to help the Utah Winter and Summer Games and $25,000 to help relocate the U.S. Ski Association in Park City from Colorado Springs, Colo., to be near the U.S. Ski Team.