Better Call FBA! While visiting some of our Forum Group’s last month, some members asked me what FBA could do for them around some of their industry issues – the sort of thing that needs to be legislated through government. I realised that many of you would not know of some of the connections that we have made in this regard, so if you would like to, read on!
In NSW we have good relations with the Office of the Minister for Small Business and – although many of you are not small businesses – this is where our sector sits politically. The Hon. John Barilaro MP is a national from the seat of Monaro and has shown active interest in our sector, perhaps because of his own family business background.
We are also lucky here to have an office of the NSW Small Business Commissioner, who is an independent statutory officer. Again – we understand that most of you are not small businesses, but equally, Robyn Hobbs understands that and works within her remit to support family business as well. This Office is funded by NSW state government to provide services to the sector – including free advice, mediation and lobbying powers. They also have legal powers that enable them to act on your behalf in such matter as unfair contracts and the can require councils, state government bodies and other businesses to provide information and answer questions.
Nationally, we now have access to the Office of the Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (yes – the family bit got recognised this year for the first time – anywhere in the world!). Kate Carnell has recently taken up this inaugural role and with her past experience as CEO of ACCI, she is highly experienced in the issues of all business – small and large.
In addition to this, I am developing relationships on an ongoing basis with organizations such as the Business Enterprise Centres (there are 17 in NSW – in all regional areas as well as Sydney) and the NSW Business Chamber amongst others, all of whom have resources designed to assist business – family and otherwise.
If you have issues that you would like raised or if you would like to take advantage of some these connections we have made (and continue to grow) on your behalf, please start by contacting me either by phone or email and we can see where to start to help you. We may be here for you and your family, but we are certainly here for your business as well.
Until next time,
NSW and ACT Manager