Buffalo gets “F” rating from small business owners


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – If you’re looking to start a small business in Buffalo, a survey from Thumbtack.com may make you reconsider.

The website partnered with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation for the Small Business Friendliness Survey, which was sent to more than 12,000 small business owners across the country. Buffalo, along with Sacramento, Providence, Bridgeport and San Diego, were survey’s worst performing cities.

Buffalo received an F rating for overall friendliness, as well as:

  • F in ease of starting a business
  • F in ease of hiring
  • D+ in regulations
  • B+ in health and safety
  • F in employment, labor and hiring
  • F in tax code
  • F in licensing
  • C in environmental
  • C- in zoning
  • B in training and networking programs

According to three responses to the survey posted on Thumbtack.com, both a house cleaner and musician cite taxes as a main reason Buffalo isn’t small business-friendly.

Jon Lieber, Chief Economist of Thumbtack.com, said, “Creating a business climate that is welcoming to small, dynamic businesses is more important than ever, and Buffalo’s business owners think the city has a long way to go.”

Buffalo was the least friendly city in NYS, finishing behind Rochester, which received a B, New York City, which received a C+ and Albany, which received a C. Overall, New York State received a D+ for its friendliness towards small businesses, making it seventh least friendly state in the country.

One small silver lining: Buffalo was rated third best in the country for the number of small businesses who found local government websites easy to use.

The top-rated cities in the survey were Colorado Springs, Boise, Houston, Austin, and Louisville.

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