Business Regulation and Consumer Protection:

Selected Operations of Three Small Business Development Centers

CED-79-113: Published: Jul 24, 1979. Publicly Released: Aug 23, 1979.

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An examination was made of certain operations of the Small Business Administration (SBA) program for Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs). Although the SBDCs are using SBA funds for program purposes, only 20 to 30 percent of expenditures examined at two of the three operations were used for direct services to clients. Client responses to a questionnaire tended to be in favor of the program, while private firms providing similar services tended to express concerns about the program. In responding to the question of how much use the assistance of the SBDCs was to them, 56 percent of the 117 clients answered in categories ranging from "moderate use" to "little or no use," while 44 percent answered "great use" to "very great use." Fifty-six percent of the clients said they would not have been willing to pay for the assistance, while another 22 percent would have been willing to pay only $25 for the assistance. Private firms providing similar services were frequently negative toward the SBA/SBDC program.

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