INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Mike Pence has restructured Indiana efforts to help small businesses in a bid to create more jobs and startups.
Pence on Thursday created the Indiana Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship that he says will focus on consulting, specialty programming, and integrating universities, private businesses and government agencies. Also, a new ombudsman position is designed to cut through government red tape for small businesses and startups.
Pence says that during the state's last growth period, only 2.5 percent of Indiana's companies — all new, fast-growing small businesses — created jobs. Small businesses have fewer than 500 employees.
The agency's first executive director will be Jacob Schpok, who has run Indiana's Small Business Development Center the last two years. The development center will be part of the new agency.