Mayor Craig Morgan writes a monthly column for the Round Rock Leader.
The last year has been tough for many of us, and our small businesses in Round Rock are no exception.
This week is National Small Business Week, and it’s a great time to reflect on the contributions of our entrepreneurs and small business owners. We must also remember the importance of shopping locally and supporting the businesses that make our community unique.
Round Rock is a place where entrepreneurs and small businesses are welcomed and supported, and it’s up to all of us to give them the encouragement they need to grow and expand in our community.
Operated by our friends, neighbors or even family, our local businesses make up the fabric of our community. Here in Williamson County, small to small-medium sized businesses account for nearly 99 percent of establishments, and it is estimated that in Round Rock alone we have more than 4,000 businesses with less than 100 employees.
Our small businesses not only provide jobs for residents, they also give back to our community at large. I’m fortunate to know many small businesses who are active in sponsoring and supporting community sport teams and events, our schools and non-profits. Many of our local leaders either own or work for small businesses.
In addition to the vital role our local businesses serve in Round Rock’s economy, they also benefit our quality of life in many concrete ways.
For every $100 in purchases by visitors, residents and businesses, the City of Round Rock collects $2 in sales tax revenues. Here’s the breakdown of how those revenues are used: the General Fund, which pays for public safety, parks, library and other basic City services, gets $1, while 50 cents goes to property tax reduction and the remaining 50 cents goes to the Type B Fund to pay for roads and economic development. Since approved by voters in 1997, that Type B half-cent has generated $600 million worth of transportation improvements.
The 50 cents earmarked for property tax reduction reduced the property tax rate for our current budget year by 14.4 cents, saving the median homeowner $31 per month, or 25 percent, on their monthly tax bill. When your friends visit you in Round Rock and shop locally, you can thank them for saving you money on your tax bill.
For these reasons and more, we must continue to provide a nurturing entrepreneurial environment for those willing to take the risk of business ownership. We appreciate our partners at the Round Rock Chamber who remain committed to growing a thriving ecosystem that supports high-growth entrepreneurs and start-up businesses in Round Rock. The Chamber is also working diligently to support entrepreneurship in Round Rock and to be a resource for programs and information to the entrepreneurship community. I encourage you to visit the Chamber’s website at roundrockchamber.org for resources, events and more information about small businesses support in Round Rock.
From the places we take visitors when they come to town to the restaurants we choose to frequent with our families, our local businesses make a mark on our lives. To all of the small businesses, founders and business owners in Round Rock, we thank you for your valuable contribution to our thriving economy and look forward to continuing to support you.