Sacramento, Calif. /California Newswire/ — As part of a continued effort to provide resources, information and potential access to capital, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GoED), the California Small Business Development Centers and Business Matchmaking held the last in a series of statewide events designed to provide specific information to assist small business owners, economic developers, individuals seeking self-employment and others.

The “Governor’s Conference on Small Business Comes to You” series has built on the momentum of the Governor’s Conference on Small Business & Entrepreneurship II which was held earlier this year in Oakland. Hundreds of participants have attended events across the state and GoED and its partners are making plans to hold more of these events next year.

“California’s entrepreneurial spirit can fuel our economic recovery today and for years to come,” said GoED Director Joel Ayala. “By working with statewide partners, we hope to be able to provide the tools, resources, and information that small businesses need to position themselves to grow and lead various sectors of our economy.”

California is one of the largest economies in the world with a gross state product over $1.8 trillion. This could not be possible without the contribution of small businesses. In California, there are 3.2 million small businesses that employ over seven million people, and their innovation, perseverance and vision are making economic recovery a reality.

In October of this year, the U.S. Department of the Treasury moved to support business lending in California when it announced the state would receive $168.6 million under the State Small Business Credit Initiative. The two California agencies that will oversee this small business lending are the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency and California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer’s Office. Both agencies provided updates during today’s event.

“Small businesses are a vital part of California’s economy,” said Treasurer Lockyer. “It’s important for state and local partners to work together to reach out to the business community with events like these. I look forward to working with BT&H to deliver loans to small businesses with these new federal funds as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

Information about the BT&H Small Business Loan Guarantee Program can be accessed by clicking on: Information about the California State Treasurer Office’s CalCap Program can be accessed by clicking on:

“We know small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the main drivers of private job creation in every community across the state,” said Merrill Stevenson, Manager of the Small Business Loan Guarantee Program. “We look forward to leveraging these program funds to help small business owners meet there business needs and allow them continued access to capital which is a great tool in keeping business in California.”

GoED will work jointly with BT&H and California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer’s Office to help promote and increase participation in the state’s small business lending programs. Online information will be updated on a regular basis and featured on the GoED site.

The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GoED) was launched by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to help stimulate and facilitate economic growth across the state. GoEd serves as a one-stop shop for business needs and can offer assistance, resources, and other tools to assist with the creation, expansion and retention of businesses. GoED’s mission is to make it easier to do business in the state.