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SMALL BUSINESS/BUY LOCAL

8 I CNYBJ.COM

BUSINESS JOURNAL NEWS NETWORK I FEBRUARY 20, 2017

What Small Businesses Need to Know in 2017 E

very year brings ments in your hands already. Don’t just crease profitability. changes to rules, push them over to your tax accountant, Listen to a startup podcast — Sipping regulations, laws, or set them aside after you pull off the a favorite drink while cooking an evening’s and culture that will compiled totals numbers for income-tax dinner in the kitchen is a perfect time to affect your business. reporting. Use them. How do you do that? listen to a podcast, and StartUp (https:// Here are some inter- You (or your business adviser) analyze gimletmedia.com/startup/) from Gimlet esting and exciting up- the revenues and expenses against your Media is a great one. Each season is a Viewpoint dates for 2017. metrics and projections, and against ratio little different, but highly recommended is Review and ana- standards in your industry. Then make Season 3 which focuses each episode on lyze year-end financial statements — decisions about raising or lowering prices, a company that is “stuck”. You can learn Tax-reporting time is right around the making investments, acquiring additional from actual case studies how founders Comm Lenders_CNY Business Journal_Junior Page_7.5x9.875_4c_Aug 2016 corner,COB_DeWitt so you should have year-end state- financing, or cutting some spending to in- managed to navigate big changes, even in

FRANK CETERA

Member FDIC

Great rates. Tailored solutions. Let’s talk business.

Luke Fagan, Russell Sturtz, Joseph Pedrotti, Trevor Bacon • Commercial Banking Officers

When you do business with us, you work with experienced bankers who help you find the best financial solution for your business.

Luke Fagan 315-445-7348 Russell Sturtz 315-445-3137 Joseph Pedrotti 315-445-3180 Trevor Bacon 315-445-3145

some cases closing their companies. Equity crowdfunding — Starting last May 16, 2016, regulation crowdfunding took effect — allowing non-accredited investors the ability to invest in startup securities for equity returns and ownership. Long-time crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo (https://equity.indiegogo.com) have jumped into the fray along with newcomers such as seedinvest (https://www. seedinvest.com). Startup investing is not just for venture capitalists and highly-connected angel investors any more. Subscribe to Start-Up Digest Syracuse — Startup Digest — a project of Techstars, which also oversees the highly successful Startup Weekend series of events for startups across the country — is reigniting in Syracuse. Startup Digest is a “curated, personal, actionable guide for your entrepreneurial journey.” Anyone can subscribe for bi-weekly curation of events and happenings by visiting https://www. startupdigest.com/digests/syracuse. Account for increasing costs — The price of a first-class stamp went up to 49 cents from 47 cents starting on Jan 22. The IRS mileage rate decreased from 54 to 53.5 cents per business mile, which might not have a large effect on most businesses. But if you’re in the transportation business, check out your cash-flow projections incorporating the change. The Federal Reserve recently raised the Federal Funds rate by a ¼ of a percentage point and indicated that it would likely raise rates two to three more times in 2017. So, work some varied projections into your analysis for this year. New York State minimum-wage changes went into effect on Dec. 31 at: • $9.70 per hour for Upstate New York • $10 per hour for Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties • $10.50 for New York City (small employers) • $11 for New York City (large employers) Be aware of legislative and regulatory changes — The new I-9 form went into effect on Jan. 17, required to be used for verifying the legality (https://www.uscis. gov/i-9) of all new employees. If you have owners, managers, and other high earners, the company may have higher payroll taxes this year as the base wage rate for FICA Social Security rose from $118,500 in 2016 to $127,200.  Frank Cetera is a NYS-certified business advisor at the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) located at OCC.

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