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Colorado State Publications Blog

Business Identity Theft

Identity theft doesn’t just target individuals — businesses are also vulnerable to these types of crimes. Hijackers can steal financial information from businesses in order to pose as that business to establish lines of credit or make fraudulent purchases. How can your business protect itself from identity theft and cyber crimes? Three Colorado state agencies – the Secretary of State’s Office, the Attorney General’s Office, and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) – have teamed up to bring you several helpful resources that can increase awareness and protect your business.

The Business Identity Theft Resource Guide was developed by the three partner agencies to aid businesses in protecting themselves from identity theft as well as to offer guidance to victims. Use the resource guide to learn how to monitor financial activity, safeguard your records and financial information, and protect your customers’ personal information. You can also find more at their Protect Your Business website, and in this brochure.

The Attorney General’s Office, along with the Federal Trade Commission, has also published a separate guide, Protecting Personal Information: A Guide for Business, which provides numerous helpful tips and resources for planning and protecting businesses from identity theft and fraud. Additionally, the CBI has a helpful website about identity theft and cyber crimes, and the Attorney General’s website also offers information on how to protect your customers, along with other identity theft resources.

For more resources on identity theft, including information on what to do if your individual identity is stolen, visit our library’s online catalog.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Transportation Network Companies

How does the State of Colorado regulate digitally-networked transportation companies like Uber and Lyft? The Colorado Legislative Council has just published a new Issue Brief that explores this topic. Here you can learn about the many differences between transportation network companies (TNCs) and traditional taxicabs, including driver requirements, safety inspections, and how the companies set their rates. For more information on rules and regulations for transportation companies, see the Colorado Public Utilities Commission website.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Sales Tax Changes

Changes to the laws about how sales tax is collected in Colorado went into effect on December 1. These changes affect many small businesses in Colorado. The new laws require retailers who ship taxable products to consumers in Colorado to base the sales tax collected on the buyer’s address, not the seller’s. This gets complicated, however, because when adding up all the state’s cities, counties, and special districts, there are “683 possible sales tax rates in Colorado,” according to the Denver Post. So how can retailers learn about these changes and implement them? First of all, the good news is that the Colorado Department of Revenue is allowing a grace period through May 31, 2019, to allow retailers to implement these changes. You can find information about the grace period and FAQs about the changes on the department’s website. You can also learn more at Revenue Online.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Business Tools & Resources

The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) just completed a major overhaul of their website, which includes a helpful Business Tools & Resources page.  Here you can find a new site-selection guide, aimed at drawing businesses to Colorado, and other resources.  Also on OEDIT’s new webpage, choosecolorado.com, are pages outlining key industries and resources for businesses in those industries; benefits of living in Colorado (to encourage businesses to locate in or relocate to Colorado); helpful programs such as the Minority Business Office, the Colorado Innovation Network, and ByColorado; and much more.  These resources are not just for out-of-state interests looking at Colorado; they can help anyone who wants to learn more about the state’s key industries and economic programs. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Small Business Week

May 1-7 is Colorado Small Business Week.  “With over 560,000 small businesses and half our workforce employed by small businesses, this week of workshops, events and festivities will celebrate Colorado’s entrepreneurial spirit,” according to the Colorado Small Business Week website.  The website also includes a calendar of events.

Our library offers many resources for small businesses.  The Colorado Business Resource Book, also available for checkout in hardcopy, offers all of the important information you need to get your small business up and running.  For more helpful resources, see our library’s Colorado Business and Economic Information resource guide. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Hire for Colorado

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment is working to reduce the number of unemployed and underemployed persons in Colorado.  Although the number of unemployed has been reduced with the upturn in the economy following the recession, many are still underemployed in Colorado, according to a new website sponsored by the Department.  HireforColorado.com is a website for both employers and job seekers to find out information on putting Colorado to work.  “If you are a jobseeker, here you will find information and resources to help you find your next job. Employers – sign our employer pledge, post jobs and learn about tax credit opportunities,” proclaims the website.  Not just a jobs listing site, Hire for Colorado also discusses information on expanding training opportunities for decreasing underemployment; revising hiring practices to get better pools of applicants; and how unemployed persons can “get back in the game” after six months or more of unemployment.  If you are seeking a job or looking to fill a position with the best qualified candidate, check out this website today.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Sales Tax Information for Businesses

If you are selling goods in the State of Colorado your business is required to have a sales tax license (sometimes known as a vendor license).  This license, through the state Department of Revenue, is required for the collection and distribution of sales tax revenue.  The Department of Revenue has set up a helpful webpage with information about sales tax licenses/accounts.  Here you can find out:

  • Types of sales tax licenses
  • How to get a license
  • How to renew your license
  • How to close out a license
  • How to use Revenue Online to access account information
  • Verify whether another business is licensed in Colorado
  • Verify, add, correct, or make changes to your address, etc.

For more tax information visit the Department of Revenue’s taxation homepage or search our library’s online catalog.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Recognizes Teachers and Small Businesses

This week Colorado is recognizing two separate groups for their contributions to our state.  May 4-8, 2015, is Teacher Appreciation Week as well as Small Business Week.

Teacher Appreciation Week
As the school year draws to a close, this week has been set aside to thank teachers for all they have done for us.  Nearly everyone can recall a teacher or professor who inspired us, challenged us, or just made learning extra fun.  The Colorado Department of Higher Education encourages Coloradans to thank their favorite teacher by posting a message or video at #ThankATeacherCO.  Our library has numerous resources on teaching and teachers, including teacher education, licensing, evaluation, employment, recruitment, and more.  Search our web catalog for resources.

Small Business Week
The Colorado Secretary of State’s Office is highlighting National Small Business Week this week by directing business owners and researchers to the many resources available on their website, such as

·        Starting a business in Colorado tutorial

·        Protecting your business form identity theft

·        The Quarterly Business Indicators report

·        Filing tips

·        Helpful business links

·        Business FAQs

The SOS also points out that many resources are available from the Small Business Administration (SBA), which has posted a special Bulletin with resources for Small Business Week.  Also be sure to check out the Colorado Small Business Development Centers (SBDC), which offer locations around the state for business training and consulting.  They also offer the very helpful Colorado Business Resource Guide, available online or in print via checkout from our library, or you
can pick up a copy at your local SBDC location

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Nonprofit Board Member Course

Don’t let this be your Board!

With the new year often comes new board members for nonprofits.  If you are joining a nonprofit board this upcoming year, or just want a refresher, check out the Colorado Secretary of State’s Nonprofit Board Member Course.  This helpful online tool can give you tips on board governance, personnel issues, financial responsibilities, and much more. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Innovation Week

Governor Hickenlooper has proclaimed August 25-29, 2014 as “Colorado Innovation Week.”  According to the Governor’s press release, “The four pillars of the Colorado innovation ecosystem are talent, ideas, capital, and entrepreneurship.”  Hickenlooper says, “Innovation Week is a catalyst for bringing together many of the brightest thinkers and innovation leaders from around the world to inspire great ideas, cultivate relationships and advance Colorado’s robust economic growth and foundation as the nation’s premier innovation hub.”  Central to the Innovation Week festivities is the Colorado Innovation Network (COIN), which just yesterday released the brand-new State of Innovation 2014 report.  COIN will be hosting an Innovation Summit during this week.  For more information and resources visit COIN’s website, http://www.coloradoinnovationnetwork.com/

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Starting a Business in Colorado

The State of Colorado offers many resources for Colorado entrepreneurs.  One of the most helpful resources is an online tutorial from the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office, Starting a Business in ColoradoThis tutorial takes you step-by-step through the business registration process, starting with selecting and registering your business name.  You can also use the Secretary of State’s website to check and make sure the name you have chosen is not already in use.  To do this, go to the Business Database.  The tutorial also includes a link to this database.  Continuing with the tutorial, you will find out how to secure your business record; then it outlines the next steps you need to take.

The State of Colorado has also set up another website to assist in the registration process.  This is the Colorado Business Express.  Although it is more complicated to use than the Secretary of State’s tutorial, this website is useful by allowing users to customize their registration to their individual needs.  The site also offers links to various resources on starting a business.

Finally, be sure and check the Colorado Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) website.  Part of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, the SBDC offers locations around the state where entrepreneurs can access consulting services, attend training workshops and other events, and find helpful resources such as the Colorado Business Resource Book.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Online Business Filings from the Colorado Secretary of State

If you are looking for incorporation records for any registered Colorado business, they are available online through the Colorado Secretary of State’s Business Database.  Search the database by business or trade name, or by ID number.  Once you have searched for a business, it will return with a summary screen including the business name, ID, date of incorporation, status, and business address.  Then it offers the option of viewing the filing documents and, if you are the owner of the business, options for setting up secure business filings from the webiste.  These filings are public record that can assist new businesses in determining whether the name they have chosen for their business is currently in use.  The documents can also assist the public in locating information such as how long an entity has been in business. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Innovation Network

The State of Colorado has launched a new resource for business and entrepreneurs, the Colorado Innovation Network.  Their website explains how they can help Colorado businesses:

Hello. We are the Colorado Innovation Network, but you can call us COIN. We are a catalyst for innovation. We are creating a physical and virtual network of global leaders that will encourage relationships to support the innovation ecosystem, grow companies, and create jobs.
 
The COIN website includes many features such as innovation news, events, and programs, and even an illustrated timeline showing Colorado business innovations through history.  Especially helpful, however, is the website’s Resource Center.  Here you will find maps, higher education information, a link to the Colorado Business Resource Guide, and an Innovation Library which connects users to business resources from around the world.  In the Resource Center you will also find information on venture capital, incubators and accelerators, federal labs, and the fourteen key industries that the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade is focusing on attracting to our state. 
 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Business Resource Book

Since 1998, the Colorado Business Resource book has been helping entrepreneurs and small business owners with the information they need to succeed.  Published by the Colorado Small Business Development Centers, the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, and other partners, the book is continually updated to reflect the most current information.  You can view a copy of the book here, or you can pick up a free copy at your local economic development center, chamber of commerce, or Small Business Development Center.  The business resource book contains the following sections:

  • Starting a Business
  • Business Entry Options
  • Legal Structure & Registration
  • Income & Property Tax
  • Colorado Sales Tax
  • Employer Responsibilities
  • Bookkeeping
  • Sources of Assistance
  • Choosing Your Advisors
  • Business Plan
  • Marketing
  • Financing Options
  • Liabilities and Insurance
  • Trademarks, Copyrights, and Patents
  • Emerging Industries
  • Important Contact Information
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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado INSITE

Are you looking for a home for your business?  Whether you have a small start-up and are looking for a location, have an established business are thinking of upgrading your space, or are investing in commercial real estate, you will find the new Colorado INSITE website a valuable resource.  Sponsored by the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), the website provides a searchable database of commercial properties for sale and for lease in all parts of the state.  You can search by geographic location, property type (warehouse, retail, etc.), square footage, price, and other criteria to find the property that is right for you.  You can also search by company type or view a customizable map of communities to assist you with your selection.  Additionally, the site includes a handy feature which allows you to select and compare up to five properties. 

http://www.advancecolorado.com/site-selection/sites-and-buildings
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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado Resource Gateway: Ideas for Entrepreneurs

The Colorado Small Business Development Center Network has a new resource, Colorado Resource Gateway, for Colorado entrepreneurs.  According to the site,

The Colorado Resource Gateway connects Colorado business owners to relevant resources and business development organizations. The Business Resource Gateway filters resources based on Business Life Cycle stage, type of assistance sought, and geographic area.

Click on the homepage, and you can choose what stage of entrepreneurship you are currently in:

  • Idea (researching and developing an idea or invention)
  • Pre-Venture (actively pursuing starting a business)
  • Startup (organized company is not yet producing revenue)
  • Early Stage (less than $1M in revenue and less than 10 employees)
  • Second Stage ($1M to $9M in revenue and 10-99 employees)
  • Mature (More than $9M in revenue and more than 100 employees)

Based on where you are in the process, the site guides you toward the resources you need regarding all facets of starting and running a business, including finances and capital, licensing, business consulting and/or mentoring, technology transfer, networking, and more. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado SBDC and Transportation Projects

Yesterday’s blog post introduced the Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network as a resource for small businesses.  In addition to their business services, the Colorado SBDC has also partnered with the Colorado Dept. of Transportation (CDOT) to help small businesses in the transportation industry.  SBDC and CDOT have partnered up to launch a new website, www.connect2dot.org, which “provides small businesses with all of the news, information, and resources needed to compete in the Colorado transportation industry. On this site you will find valuable information about how to do business with CDOT and other state and local transportation agencies.  For more information, including a list of resources found on the site, see their April 29 press release
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Colorado State Publications Blog

Colorado SBDC Network

The Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network has a new website.  Here you can find information about the resources and assistance available to those looking to start a business or to those interested in growing and sustaining their current Colorado small business.  Sponsored by the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, the SBDC provides counseling, consulting and training for small businesses in our state.  On the website you can also find the Colorado Business Resource Book, filled with helpful information on starting and running a business, including information on laws, taxes, bookkeeping, insurance, trademarks, and more. 

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Relocating a Business to Colorado

If you’re interested in taking advantage of Colorado’s highly educated workforce and other amenities by relocating your business in our beautiful state, all the information you need is available at your fingertips through the Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade’s Site Selection resource.  Here you will find everything you need to know, from incentives and financing, to information on infrastructure and community resources; there’s even a listing of sites and buildings waiting for your business to locate there!  Need more convincing?  The site also cointains a quick rundown of statistics on the state’s business climate and workforce…and of course, there’s those mountains too…



Photo courtesy Colorado State Parks

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Worker’s Compensation in Colorado

Both employers and employees should be aware of worker’s compensation laws in Colorado.  If you’re an injured worker or an employer, be sure to visit the Colorado Dept. of Labor & Employment’s workers compensation webpage for the information you need to understand the process.  For background and explanation of the laws, see the 2012 Colorado Worker’s Compensation Act booklet.

Employees – be sure to read the CDLE’s Employee’s Guide, available online and from our library, for answers to your questions, including dispute resolution information.  The CDLE also has a webpage for injured workers with links to forms, rules, medical information, a benefits calculator, and more.

Employers – The CDLE created the Employer’s Guide just for you, with everything you need to know before and after a worker gets injured on the job.  See also the CDLE’s Employers & Insurers page for forms, legal information, medical topics, insurance information, and more.  You’ll also want to check out Workers’ Compensation Insurance Requirements for Employers.

Researchers – Need stats on workers’ compensation injuries in Colorado?  The CDLE has those too.  See Work-Related Injuries in Colorado, an annual statistical report on injured workers, which our library has back to 1995; Workers’ Compensation Costs in Colorado; and 2010 Injured Worker Exit Survey Results.

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Colorado State Publications Blog

Help in Planning Your Career

Whether you’re in high school/college and planning your future, or already in the workforce and looking to change careers, a good way to help select your vocation is to look at future projections for jobs and professions.  The Colorado Dept. of Labor and Employment publishes each year a series of brochures listing the top jobs/careers projected for the next decade.  This is a great way to know which industries you will be most likely to be able to find a job in – and which careers to avoid.  The CDLE’s Labor Market Information section also provides online a number of other reports and brochures helpful for career planning, including specific industry information on health care, creative industries, green jobs, construction, retail trade, tourism, finance, manufacturing, and more.