Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette Recognizes Small Business Week Bookmark and Share

June 25, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 25, 2012
Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, 207-621-5009

AUGUSTA—To recognize the contributions small businesses make to Maine’s economy, Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette walked through downtown Waterville on Tuesday, June18 and met with several successful businesses as part of Small Business Week.

“Capital goes where it is welcome and stays where it is appreciated,” said Governor Paul R. LePage. “Maine appreciates its small businesses. Thank you for creating and keeping your business in Maine.”

To celebrate this weeklong event and emphasize the importance of small businesses in Maine’s economy and employment, commissioners from several state departments took time out of their schedules to visit small businesses across the state.

Commissioner Paquette visited several businesses on Main Street. The tour, led by Waterville Main Street Director Jennifer Olsen, included stops at Selah Tea, Earth Bound, Barrels, Maine Film Center and Holy Cannoli! At each stop, Commissioner Paquette spoke with the owners and managers and thanked them for their hard work.

Commissioner Paquette said, “We want businesses to be comfortable coming to the Department of Labor with any questions or concerns about running a small business. We want to be a resource so that these businesses get the answers they need in order to better comply with the law and understand regulations. Ultimately, we want to make it easier for them to create jobs and employ Maine people.”

The Commissioner also completed a walk-through tour of the Levine’s renovations occurring on Main Street in Waterville.

Small Business Week is a nationally recognized weeklong celebration that recognizes the importance of small businesses across our nation; 2013 marked its 50th Anniversary.

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, “More than half of Americans either own or work for a small business and they create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. each year.” Small businesses play an especially important role in Maine, making up the vast majority of businesses in the state. In 2012, 95 percent of Maine businesses consisted of 50 or fewer employees.

Commissioner Paquette intends to continue recognizing small businesses throughout the summer. Commissioner Paquette plans to visit the Waterville Public Library’s Business and CareerCenter and Tree Spirits located in Oakland.

To see video accounts of the Commissioner’s visit to downtown Waterville using the Vine app, follow the department’s account at “Maine Department of Labor.” These videos may also be viewed on the department’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/MaineDOL , and Twitter account, https://twitter.com/maine_labor .

The Department of Labor administers Maine’s unemployment insurance system, helps ensure the safety of employees and provides workforce development leadership and vocational rehabilitation services throughout the state. The department focuses on connecting Mainers to jobs and helping businesses create jobs through strengthening our workforce development system, improving outreach to businesses and clarifying employment regulations.

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Supporting documents

Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette shops at Barrels, a nonprofit indoor market located in downtown Waterville. Barrels’ promotes local and natural products.

Commissioner Jeanne Paquette (counterclockwise from front) discusses employment regulations with Shannon Haines, executive director of the Maine Film Center, Julie Rabinowitz, director of communication for the Department of Labor, Jennifer Olsen, director of Waterville Main Street, and Susan Wasserott, director of legislative affairs for the Department of Labor. In December of 2012, the Maine Film Center purchased Railroad Square Cinema and now employs 14 people.