Help is on the way for small businesses in Connecticut. The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) has been touring the state for the last several months to promote all of the various small business programs the state has initiated through the special legislative session held this past October. The Jobs Session produced legislation geared to helping small business grow and create jobs here in Connecticut.

Peter Lent, Assistant Executive Director at DECD gives an update on the Reinventing CT Workshops held to date.

The DECD Reinventing Connecticut Workshops have been well attended and have given hope to the Connecticut small business community. This excitement was clear when DECD's commissioner, Catherine Smith, said in an AP press report last Friday that her office had received 95 applications for the state's new small business assistance program and that she expects more will be filed.

Commissioner Smith, also stated in the AP report that businesses have been seeking loans and grants for things such as new equipment and for help hiring more employees and covering shortfalls. Smith said Friday that interest from businesses "has exceeded my expectations."

If you have not had the chance to attend a DECD Reinventing CT Workshop, there are a few more scheduled in the coming weeks. Here's a list.

12/22 8:30 - 10:00 a.m. Norwich/Three Rivers Community College

1/5 8:30 - 10:00 a.m. Bridgeport/Housatonic Community College

1/9 8:30 - 10:00 a.m. Meriden/Four Points Sheraton

1/12 8:30 - 10:00 a.m. Danbury/Matrix Corporate Center

Those interested in attending should register at in advance or call 800-392-2122 for more information.