Welcome to the Economic Development Department's Business Brief! We are continuing to ensure you are updated on the latest business resources and news.


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City of Long Beach Launches Sidewalk to Success Program to Support Business Development

The City of Long Beach, through the Long Beach Recovery Act, is funding a sidewalk vending support program, “Sidewalk to Success,” to help ease the financial burden for small businesses in the first year of the City’s recently approved Sidewalk Vending Ordinance that went into effect Monday, February 26, 2024.


The City Council approved the development of a sidewalk vending support program to cover the costs of the required business license and health permit fees for operating in the first year and provide reimbursements for the first year of insurance costs. Under the Sidewalk to Success Program, all costs will be covered at the time of the application, with the exception of insurance costs, which will be covered through a reimbursement process for an amount not to exceed $450. A second phase of the program is being developed that will provide up to 40 free food vending carts to sidewalk vendors who apply and meet eligibility requirements; actual carts available will depend on the type of carts and program participation. Details on eligibility and how to apply will be shared later this summer once established. 


More information about the program, including how to apply for a sidewalk vendors business license and how to obtain a health permit from the Long Beach Health Department, is available at longbeach.gov/sidewalkvending.

Celebrate Women's History Month by Shopping at Local Small Businesses

Celebrate and join the Shop Long Beach Women’s History Month Program through the Shop Long Beach program!


Empowerment, innovation, and leadership are at the heart of these enterprises, and your patronage helps to amplify their voices and contributions in our communities. From startups to established brands, let's champion female entrepreneurs and their remarkable achievements. Together, let's make a difference by choosing to shop consciously and inclusively this Women's History Month and beyond.


Through this promotion, you will receive an additional 10% back in LocalCash rewards when you shop at these Shop Long Beach women-owned businesses during March. If you are not already registered as a Shop Long Beach consumer or would like to learn more about the Shop Long Beach rewards program, please visit: shoplb.org.

Visit the Shop Long Beach website!

In Case You Missed It

City of Long Beach Passes New Ordinance Regulating Sidewalk Vending

In an effort to support entrepreneurial and business development opportunities in the city while protecting public health, safety and ADA access, during its Jan. 23, 2024, meeting, the Long Beach City Council approved with a 9 to 0 vote a new sidewalk vending ordinance. This action creates a clear path for those who would like to sell food from compact mobile food operations, more commonly known as food carts, or other merchandise.


The new ordinance, which went into effect on Feb. 26, 2024, aligns with California’s Safe Sidewalk Vending Act (SB 946), which decriminalized sidewalk vending. The City developed its own sidewalk vending ordinance, at the direction of City Council, following extensive outreach. A sidewalk vendor is a person who sells food or merchandise on a public sidewalk or other pedestrian path from a pushcart, stand, display, pedal-driven cart, wagon, showcase, rack or other nonmotorized conveyance, or from one’s person. Food vendors are required to obtain a health permit from the Health Department.


A comprehensive handbook and other educational materials will be available by the time the ordinance is in effect. The City is also creating a multipronged educational campaign to alert current and potential sidewalk vendors of the new ordinance and the associated requirements, as well as financial assistance opportunities.

View Full Press Release Here

Upcoming Events and Workshops

SBDC: Business Finance Literacy Series [Session 1 of 3] What You Need to Know About Accounting and Financial Record Keeping 

  • March 5, 2024, 9 am 

PACE: Content Marketing for Small Businesses: Visual Branding - Designing Compelling Graphics to Promote Your Business 

  • March 6, 2024, 1 pm

PACE: Bank of America - Small Business Finances Webinar Series: Building a Financial Foundation

  • March 6, 2024, 1 pm 

PACE: Decoding Tax Complexities Series in Collaboration with the IRS: Understanding Schedule C and Navigating Other Small Business Tax Obligations 

  • March 6, 2024, 4 pm 

PACE: Marketing: ChatGPT and Al 

  • March 7, 2024, 11 am 

Small Business Majority: Unlocking Financial Potential: A Journey Through Small Business Funding 

  • March 7, 2024, 12 pm 

SCORE: How to Create a Budget That Works for You 

  • March 7, 2024, 1 pm 

SBDC: How to Set Up & Register Your Business 

  • March 11, 2024, 3 pm

SCORE: Social Media Marketing Strategies for Your Small Business 

  • March 12, 2024, 1 pm

SBDC: How to Sell When You're Not a Salesperson 

  • March 12, 2024, 5 pm 

PACE: Think Like an Entrepreneur Series: Your Next-Level Business - Building a Foundation That Lasts 

  • March 13, 2024, 10 am 

PACE: Bank of America - Small Business Finances Webinar Series: Building Business Credit 

  • March 13, 2024, 1 pm 

PACE: Decoding Tax Complexities Series in Collaboration with the IRS: Business Use of Your Home 

  • March 13, 2024, 4 pm 

Small Business Majority: Inaugural 2024 California Supplier Diversity Symposium 

  • March 14, 2024, 8 am 

SBDC: Business Finance Literacy Series [Session 2 of 3] What You Need to Know About Accounting and Financial Record Keeping 

  • March 14, 2024, 9 am 

SBDC: Turning Your Dream into A Business 

  • March 14, 2024, 1 pm 

PACE: Using Al for Digital Marketing Series: Using Al for Video 

  • March 14, 2024, 1 pm 

SCORE: Grant Writing 101 - How to Create a Grant Proposal 

  • March 14, 2024, 1 pm

Port of Long Beach New Office Hours for Small Businesses

The Port of Long Beach kicks off new “drop-in” office hours for small and diverse business enterprises seeking assistance with potential contracting opportunities at the Port.


The Port of Long Beach is proud to announce office hours on Wednesdays from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. for small and diverse businesses looking to explore contracting opportunities at the Port, or requesting assistance with small business enterprise or disadvantaged business enterprise opportunities. Office hours will occur at the Port of Long Beach Administration Building on the first floor, located at 415 West Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, CA.


Business Insights Tool

The City of Long Beach continues to expand its innovative business resources with the launch of its Business Insights Tool, a new, free online resource for local businesses that makes big data accessible for small businesses, allowing them to benchmark performance, optimize marketing, and analyze competitors, suppliers, and underserved markets. The Business Insights tool is now available for entrepreneurs and businesses at longbeach.gov/businessinsights.

Visual Improvement Program (VIP) Grant

The Visual Improvement Program (VIP) Grant is providing direct financial relief to local small businesses and nonprofits impacted by crime and vandalism on or after 10/1/2022. Eligible businesses can receive $1,500 to cover repairs to their storefront caused by vandalism. To find more information and access the online application visit longbeach.gov/smallbizgrants.

Inclusive Business Navigators Program

The City of Long Beach launched the Inclusive Business Navigators Program to provide outreach, workshops, education, and direct technical assistance for local small businesses and nonprofits to support their economic recovery from financial hardships and disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The City previously sought partners to administer the Inclusive Business Navigators Program to support equitable economic recovery for Long Beach small businesses and nonprofits. The City selected vendors including CentroCHA, UCC, April Parker, and RightSource Services to provide outreach and assistance to local businesses. More information on these vendors and assistance available can be found at longbeach.gov/biznavigators. Businesses can also access assistance through this program through the BizCare Hotline: 562.570.4249 or 4Biz@longbeach.gov.

Pacific Gateway Work Experience Program

Looking for an opportunity to make a positive impact while also benefiting your business? Consider partnering with Pacific Gateway Workforce Innovation Network, the City's workforce agency. Pacific Gateway is seeking employers who can provide work experience opportunities to individuals with limited experience.  


By hosting a temporary worker through Pacific Gateway, you'll provide meaningful work experience to shape their professional growth. Pacific Gateway will serve as the employer on record and pay the worker's wages.

For more information about the Work Experience program or additional questions, please contact Sokko Kong at Sokko.Kong@pacific-gateway.org or 562-570-3728. 

Register Today!

Commercial Corridor Façade Improvement Program

The Commercial Corridor Façade Improvement Program (CCFIP) will provide financial assistance in the form of a grant to commercial property owners to significantly improve the appearance of the entire façade of their property that is visible from the street.

Visit the program webpage for more information and eligibility requirements.

Free Digital Marketing with CSULB

Whether you are looking to create digital marketing assets for the first time or you need to level up your current efforts, CSULB is here to help your small business grow! This program will work with CSULB students enrolled in Marketing 437: Digital Marketing and Media to create customized digital marketing materials to boost your business for free. Students will assist in creating marketing material such as website creation, email marketing, and social media marketing.

Apply Here

Long Beach Public Library Digital Library

Take your business to the next level with free online courses, entrepreneurship training, and marketing tools from the Digital Library. Offering notable and distinguished resources such as Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning, the Digital Library contains an invaluable wealth of knowledge to help business owners (and their employees) upskill and lead a successful business. The Digital Library is free for all LBPL cardholders. Sign up for a library card to access these Digital Library Resource. 

Certified Blue Restaurant Program

The Certified Blue Restaurant (CBR) program supports and recognizes the outstanding Long Beach restaurants that achieve exceptional water efficiency in our community. Interested restaurants can enroll below to receive a no-cost, on-site efficiency survey, free water-efficient devices (if eligible), and an assessment for other possible rebates. Enroll your restaurant for the Certified Blue Restaurant Program.

Are you a small business looking for new opportunities?

Every year, the Port of Long Beach needs small businesses to partner with, to build, maintain, and service the 2nd largest Port in the United States. Small businesses earn millions of dollars as primes and/or sub-contractors on Port contracts.


Small business opportunities are available for a variety of contract types, such as construction, supplies, landscaping, recycling services, technology hardware, software, and even food services. Visit the Port’s Business Opportunities Overview webpage to download a sampling of products/services procured by each Port division.


Port of Long Beach Small Business Enterprise / Very Small Business Enterprise (VSBE) Program


The main goal of the SBE/VSBE Program is to promote the participation of SBEs and VSBEs on Port contracts and procurements, via prime and subcontracting opportunities. The Port has a 27% annual department-wide goal which is achieved by setting minimum SBE and VSBE participation goals for applicable construction and professional services contracts, and bureau-wide and/or division-wide SBE/VSBE goals on applicable purchases. Learn more about the Port’s SBE/VSBE Program at polb.com/sbe.

Long Beach Procurement Platform "Long Beach Buys"

The City of Long Beach has launched Long Beach Buys, a new purchasing platform and marketplace that is free for all businesses and organizations seeking to do business with the City. Long Beach Buys is part of the City’s Extreme Procurement Makeover initiative, which aims to enhance the City’s procurement process to be more efficient, results-driven, equitable, and sustainable.

Long Beach Resource Line

Contact the City of Long Beach BizCare Hotline for Immediate Assistance:

Phone number: 562-570-4BIZ (4249)

Days: Monday - Friday

Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m.

City staff will respond to voicemails made after business hours within 24 hours.

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