Mayor Melvin Carter Announces Open for Business Subcabinet

September 25, 2018
Contact: Liz Xiong

SAINT PAUL, MN – Mayor Melvin Carter announced today the creation of a subcabinet that will implement phase two of the City’s Open for Business Initiative. The initiative helps start-ups and existing businesses find the information they need and leverage existing resources to thrive in Saint Paul.

“Our Open for Business Initiative will make sure that Saint Paul is always a promising place to start and grow a business,” said Mayor Melvin Carter. “This subcabinet will help ensure we can continue to meet the changing needs of businesses and residents in our community.”

“Our success as a city depends on building a climate that is friendly to businesses,” said Ward 2 Councilmember Rebecca Noecker. “Saint Paul’s Open for Business Initiative helps us streamline processes and provide even higher quality customer service to ensure we are achieving this success.”

“The Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce is delighted to partner with the City in this work,” said Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce President & CEO B Kyle. “The importance of a strong economy cannot be overstated, and improved efficiencies to drive more business to Saint Paul are welcome.”

“The Downtown Alliance is fully supportive of Mayor Carter’s work to make it easier to open a business and expand in Saint Paul, said Joe Spencer, President of the Saint Paul Downtown Alliance. “A thriving business community is critical to the success of our city, and the Open for Business initiative will help us achieve that. We stand ready to engage our downtown community in this challenging, yet important work.”

The members of the Open for Business Subcabinet include Saint Paul Chief Innovation Officer Tarek Tomes, Department of Safety & Inspections Director Ricardo Cervantes, Planning and Economic Development Director Dr. Bruce Corrie, Office of Technology and Communications Director Sharon Kennedy-Vickers, Public Works Director Kathy Lantry and Library Director Catherine Penkert.

About the Open for Business Initiative
In 2018, the Department of Safety and Inspections (DSI), in partnership with the Department of Planning and Economic Development, Libraries, Public Works, the Office of Technology and Communications, and the City’s Innovation Team led the implementation of phase one of the Open for Business initiative. Efforts included the upgrade of the City’s online services portal allowing the permitting process to be conducted online; the creation of a pocket guide and accompanying website detailing the City’s permitting and licensing processes; the addition of new technology tools; guidelines for emerging market businesses, such as taprooms, transportation network companies, and short-term rentals; free training programs for entrepreneurs and prospective small business owners; and overall process improvements to enhance user experience.

Phase two of the initiative will further expand the City’s ability to conduct permitting, licensing, and plan review processes online; expand the role of project facilitators who help businesses navigate the permitting, licensing and plan review processes; and the development of a “Business One Shop,” allowing businesses to accomplish more at a centralized location related to permitting, licensing, and plan review processes.

Learn more about Saint Paul’s Open for Business Initiative: