OMWBE Government Contracting Listening Sessions – Offers $100 Compensation

Office of Minority & Women’s Business Enterprises (OMWBE) is planning a series of listening sessions throughout the state, to gather community input and identify areas to improve service delivery. If you are interested in participating, we encourage you to complete the Pre-Attendance Questionnaire below. Our team will be in touch, if you are selected to participate. Selections will be made based on industry representation, to ensure different business needs and points of view are captured in the listening sessions.

Selected businesses will receive $100 for lived experience compensation. This is a one-time flat-rate sum, using Washington’s Community Compensation Guidelines.

Start the Pre-Attendance Questionnaire Here

BOIR – Effective as of January 1, 2024. Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) are required to submit Beneficial Ownership Information Reports

Why do companies have to report beneficial ownership information to the U.S. Department of the Treasury?

In 2021, Congress passed the Corporate Transparency Act on a bipartisan basis. This law creates a new beneficial ownership information reporting requirement as part of the U.S. government’s efforts to make it harder for bad actors to hide or benefit from their ill-gotten gains through shell companies or other opaque ownership structures.

Effective as of January 1, 2024. Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) are required to submit Beneficial Ownership Information Reports. Read more

WA Dept. of Commerce Request for Public Comment: Equitable Access to Credit Program

The Equitable Access to Credit Program, authorized by HB 1015 (RCW 82.04.449) (PDF), provides a tax preference mechanism that generates funds for grants to qualified lending institutions. These grants, funded through contributions in exchange for B&O tax credits, are dedicated to providing access to credit for historically underserved communities.

The Washington Department of Commerce’s Office of Economic Development and Competitiveness (OEDC) is seeking public comments and recommendations to inform the agency’s work on the development of the grant component of the Equitable Access to Credit Program. The purpose of this effort is to:

  1. Determine what information should be collected in the grant application to verify eligibility
  2. Determine desirable methods of grant administration and distribution;
  3. Identify additional information to be collected from grantees for reporting

Feedback obtained through this Request for Public Comment process will help inform coordinated agency action in designing and implementing programs that supports equitable access to credit grants.

Estimated Key Action Dates
The dates are only estimates and are provided to illustrate the current expectations for timing of actions related to this Request for Comment:

  • Public Comments must be received by January 16, 2024
  • Grants application launch on or about March 2024
  • Grants awarded on or about May 2024

Click here for more information and learn how to participate!

Ascend National Cohort Program September 2023 – April 2024


Solutions-Oriented Approach
Businesses that participate in the Ascend National Cohort enter with a defined opportunity/challenge that, when addressed, leads to business growth. Prior business opportunities/challenges have included business acquisition, international expansion, reducing employee turnover, and reducing inventory and production costs, among others. The Ascend National Cohort becomes a tool through which businesses access a breadth and depth of resources unavailable in other programs to meet the challenge and grow their profitability.

The 2023-24 program follows a successful inaugural year that saw 48 businesses improve their operations, which has led to growth rates between 5% and 50% since September 2022.

Businesses that will benefit the most from the Ascend National Cohort are those MBEs that have revenues in the $2-9 million range and are seeking to grow to $20 million in the next two years. Businesses are typically nominated for this program by one of their clients or customers. Ascend focuses on businesses that target sales in B2B or B2G environments. Read more

Pierce County Offers Free Short Courses for Small Business Owners

Hey, Pierce County Business Owners! Check out these nine new Short Courses through Pierce County’s Business Skills program. Created specifically for busy small business owners and entrepreneurs as a way to work on their business on their own time, at their own pace. FREE, on-demand business skills training is now available to help small businesses start, grow, and stay on track. Classes focus on the basics of how to succeed in business and quickly build skills to immediately put into practice.

Sign up and start working on these key areas for business success: bookkeeping, tax reporting, business planning, business law, sales skills, marketing strategies, graphic design, web design, and intercultural communication. The Pierce County Business Skills Program’s free curriculum is developed in partnership with Pacific Lutheran University as part of the Pierce County Community Navigator program and is funded by the American Rescue Plan Act.

Sign up today!

Achieve More Grant – Applications Closed

Washington MBDA Business Center is proud to present the Achieve More Grant (AMG) where a total of $200,000 funds are available to Women & Minority-owned businesses to help drive innovation and economic growth in our region.  The “Achieve More” Grant is designed to help eligible women & minority-owned small businesses throughout the state of Washington to offset three types of costs:

  • Infrastructure Improvements (up to $5,000)
  • Employee Training (up to $5,000)
  • Business & Technological Equipment (up to $5,000)

Read the press release by City of Tacoma here for more details.  Applications are accepted through March 19, 2023 at 11:59PM.** 

**Update, March 20, 2023: Applications closed as of March 19, 2023. Applications are currently under review. Awardees will be announced Friday May 26, 2023.

All candidates must complete the initial Eligibility Questionnaire (see link below) and submit their intent to attend at least “one” Achieve More Grant workshop.  Workshops are free to attend and will be held in-person and virtually.

The Achieve More Grant is closed and no longer accepting applications.  Winners were announced May 26, 2023.

January Update from Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for Business Owners

Please see the following newsletter from IRS for small business owners for January 2023.

►Hot Off the Press:

  • More news about 1099-K rules. Check here for continuing updates: Form 1099-K Frequently Asked Questions: General | Internal Revenue Service (
  • IR 2022-226 – IRS announces delay for implementation of $600 reporting threshold for third-party payment platforms’ Forms 1099-K
  • IR-2022-234 – IRS issues standard mileage rates for 2023; business use increases 3 cents per mile
  • IR-2022-231 – IRS releases frequently asked questions about clean vehicles credits for new, previously owned and commercial clean vehicles
  • IR-2022-225 – IRS releases frequently asked questions about energy efficient home improvements and residential clean energy property credits

►Upcoming Webinars and Events

►New Tax Tips

  • Connect to the IRS social media and e-news subscriptions for tax time tips and resources English | Spanish
  • TIGTA Report – Backlogs of Tax Returns and Other Account Work Will Continue Into the 2023 Filing Season

► Cybersecurity and ID Theft News

► IRS YouTube Channel 

► & Additional Resources   


Pierce County Business Accelerator Directory – Discover Local BIPOC, Women, and Veteran-Owned Businesses with a New Tool

Pierce County Business Accelerator

Shop local for the holidays and support BIPOC, women, and veteran-owned small businesses via a new online directory.

The Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber has launched a new tool to help find businesses owned by BIPOC, women, and veterans. Visit to find and support local entrepreneurs this holiday season!

The directory spotlights Pierce County Business Accelerator program (PCBA) graduate businesses, offering a variety of goods and services. The directory is searchable by businesses location and category and includes an interactive map.

Visit today to discover a PCBA business near you and explore opportunities to support local business owners!

Starting October 3rd: Minority Businesses in King and Pierce Counties Can Apply for $10K Grant from Comast RISE Investment Fund

As part of Comcast RISE, small businesses owned by women and people of color, including Black, Indigenous, Hispanic, and Asian American owners in Pierce & King Counties may apply for a $10,000 grant from the Comcast RISE Investment Fund. Comcast will award $1 million in grants to 100 eligible businesses in these two counties, as well as technology and marketing resources to eligible businesses statewide.

Beginning on October 3, and through October 16, eligible businesses can apply for Comcast RISE monetary grants, and, or marketing and technology Services at Winners will be notified in November.

Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce Partners with City of Tacoma and Comcast on Thrive Tacoma Business Fund

September 13, 2022 – The Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce is honored to partner with the City of Tacoma and Comcast to lead the Thrive Tacoma Business Fund, which will provide $150,000 of direct financial support to BIPOC and women-owned small businesses in Tacoma. The point of this fund is to see small businesses recover, survive, and thrive in the face of challenges dealt by the COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to affect many local businesses.

This partnership is part of Comcast’s Project UP initiative, a $1 billion commitment to advance digital equity and bring new opportunities to tens of millions of people over the next ten years.

Applications for the Thrive Tacoma Business Fund open on September 15th, 2022 and will be available to access on the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber website.

Read more at Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber Blog