Pursuant to Government Code Section 11148, the Legislature intends to assist small businesses in California in complying with regulatory standards designed to protect the public. In addition, the Legislature intends that each agency that significantly regulates small business designate at least one individual to serve as the small business liaison with the role and responsibility of ombudsman for that agency.
Section 11148.5 requires a state agency that significantly regulates small business or that significantly impacts small business to designate at least one person who serves as a small business liaison. The agency must utilize existing personnel and resources to perform the duties of small business liaison.
In addition, a state agency that significantly regulates small business or that significantly impacts small business is required to widely publicize the position of small business liaison in appropriate agency publications and by prominently displaying the name and contact information of the small business liaison on the agency’s Web site if the agency has a Web site.
An agency’s small business liaison is responsible for all of the following:
- Receiving and responding to complaints received by the agency from small businesses.
- Providing technical advice and assisting small businesses in resolving problems and questions regarding compliance with the agency’s regulations and relevant statutes.
- Reporting small business concerns and, if appropriate, reporting recommendations to the agency secretary or to the agency head.
- Reviewing and updating, on a semiannual basis, content on the agency Web site that is accessible through the small business link provided on the State of California Internet portal.
- Assisting the agency secretary, department director, or executive officer, as applicable, in ensuring that the procurement and contracting processes of the applicable entity are administered in order to meet or exceed the 25 percent small business participation goal, and developing and sharing innovative procurement and contracting practices from the public and private sectors to increase opportunities for small businesses.
The small business liaison is prohibited from advocating for or against the adoption, amendment, or repeal of any regulation or intervene in any pending investigation or enforcement action.
A state agency that significantly regulates small business or that significantly impacts small business is required to notify the Office of Small Business Advocate within the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development and the Department of General Services of the name and contact information of the person or persons who have been designated as the agency’s small business liaison, as well as an occurrence of a vacancy in the position of small business liaison, within 15 working days of the occurrence of the vacancy.
Finally, the state agency must designate a small business liaison within three months after providing notice of the vacancy.
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