SBA Opens Portal to Begin Accepting Shuttered Venue Operator Grant Applications

** Please note, as of April 9, 2021 the SBA has closed this portal due to technical difficulties. Applicants can continue to register for a new account and will be informed of the reopening datae with advanced notice to ensure equitable access and preparation time. For more information visit our COVID-19 Resource Page.**

 

 

NEWS RELEASE

 PRESS OFFICE

Release Date: March 19, 2021           Contact: press_office@sba.gov

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SBA Launches Portal to Begin Accepting

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Applications on April 8

National informational webinar to review application process on March 30

 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration is launching a splash page for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) application portal today in anticipation of opening applications for the much-anticipated critical economic relief program on Thursday, April 8, 2021.

“Help is here for venue operators hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The SBA has worked diligently to build the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program from the ground up to assist and address the diverse eligibility requirements of each type of applicant and we will open for applications on April 8,” SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman said. “The SBA knows these venues are critical to America’s economy and understands how hard they’ve been impacted, as they were among the first to shutter. This vital economic aid will provide a much-needed lifeline for live venues, museums, movie theatres and many more.”

Prior to the official SVOG application opening, the SBA will host a national informational webinar to highlight the application process for potential eligible entities from 2:30 to 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 30, 2021. Those interested in participating can register here.

The SVOG program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act, which appropriated $15 billion for it. The American Rescue Plan Act, signed into law by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021, appropriated an additional $1.25 billion, bringing the program funding to a total of $16.25 billion, with more than $16 billion allocated for grants.

To ensure eligible venues do not miss a window to receive assistance through the Paycheck Protection Program, the American Rescue Plan Act also amended the SVOG program so entities that apply for a PPP loan after Dec. 27, 2020, can also apply for an SVOG, with the eligible entity’s SVOG to be reduced by the PPP loan amount. The PPP loan applications have been updated to reflect this.

As the SBA builds and prepares to open the program, the dedicated SBA website, www.sba.gov/svogrant, which includes frequently asked questions, video tutorials and other SVOG details, is the best source for information for those looking to apply for a grant. To prepare in advance of the SVOG application portal opening on April 8, potential applicants should get registered in the federal government’s System for Award Management (SAM.gov), as this is required for an entity to receive an SVOG, and reference the preliminary application checklist and eligibility requirements.

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Matt Coleman

U.S. Small Business Administration

matthew.coleman@sba.gov

Amazon Approved to Begin $135 Million Investment in Dutchess County, NY

Amazon Approved to Redevelop Former IBM Property in Dutchess County, NY

Amazon’s $135 million private investment in East Fishkill will add 500 new jobs to Dutchess County

Adobe stock photo (Gorodenkoff) of Amazon.com boxes in logistics center representative of the soon to come to Dutchess County facility in East Fishkill, NY

On Tuesday, March 9, 2021, Amazon announced its plans to expand its operation in Dutchess County at the 631,000-square-foot site on Route 52 in East Fishkill. The project is expected to create more than 500 full-time jobs and hundreds of part-time jobs. The project is Amazon’s first in Dutchess County and third in New York State.

“We are proud to continue our growth and investment in New York with a new fulfillment center in Dutchess County that will serve our customers across the state,” Alicia Boler Davis, Amazon’s Vice President of Global Customer Fulfillment said in a statement. “The Empire State and its incredible workforce have been vital to our ability to provide great selection, competitive prices, and the Prime services we know our customers love.  We are excited to create hundreds of new job opportunities – with great pay and great benefits – and remain committed to driving a positive economic impact in the community.”

In 2018, Think Dutchess identified a developer who would be interested in redeveloping the former IBM West Campus, which had laid dormant for over 20 years. Negotiations continued in 2020 for the site which remained a priority for the County. The greatest milestone was the commitment to be made by Amazon.com Services LLC in 2020 allowing USEF Tioranda LLC to move forward with the purchase of the site. The project is a testament to the advantages of doing business in Dutchess County. Its strategic location with easy access to the I-84 corridor makes it well-positioned to succeed and support our distribution and logistics industry sector.

“The vision of the County Executive, Marcus Molinaro and Assistant County Executive Ron Hick and coordination with community leaders including Nicholas D’Alessandro, Supervisor of Town of East Fishkill we have overcome many obstacles to market and attract suitable users to the site,” said Sarah Lee, CEO of Think Dutchess.  “While Think Dutchess worked to market the site and attract a user, the work of our government leaders and the DCIDA shepherded this project to reality.”

“This project is the largest redevelopment project in the history of East Fishkill,” said town supervisor Nicholas D’Alessandro in a recent press release. “This type of redevelopment is exactly what the town needs, repurposing older industrial sites into new projects that will bring more jobs, tax dollars, and stability to our community,” he said. “This project is not only beneficial economically to East Fishkill but Dutchess County and the whole Hudson Valley.”

“This investment and the expected creation of 500 jobs is a result of a proactive and targeted economic development strategy to redevelop commercial properties in Dutchess County for their highest and best use,” Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said. “What has been a largely vacant and blighted site will be transformed into a state-of-the-art logistics facility, create hundreds of jobs, and significantly improve the traffic flow and appearance of the Route 52 corridor.”

For more information about relocating your business to Dutchess County contact:

Chris Glancy

Director of Business Attraction

chris@thinkdutchess.com

845.463.5404


 

New Guidance Issued on SBA/Treasury Paycheck Protection Program

 

 

NEWS RELEASE

PRESS OFFICE                  

 

Release Date: January 8, 2021                Contactpress_office@sba.gov; 202-270-3876

Release Number: 21-02                           Follow us on: Twitter, Facebook, Blogs & Instagram

 

 

SBA and Treasury Announce PPP Re-Opening; Issue New Guidance

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced today that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. To promote access to capital, initially only community financial institutions will be able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13.  The PPP will open to all participating lenders shortly thereafter. Updated PPP guidance outlining Program changes to enhance its effectiveness and accessibility was released on January 6 in accordance with the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Non-Profits, and Venues Act.

This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.

“The historically successful Paycheck Protection Program served as an economic lifeline to millions of small businesses and their employees when they needed it most,” said SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza.  “Today’s guidance builds on the success of the program and adapts to the changing needs of small business owners by providing targeted relief and a simpler forgiveness process to ensure their path to recovery.”

“The Paycheck Protection Program has successfully provided 5.2 million loans worth $525 billion to America’s small businesses, supporting more than 51 million jobs,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.  “This updated guidance enhances the PPP’s targeted relief to small businesses most impacted by COVID-19.  We are committed to implementing this round of PPP quickly to continue supporting American small businesses and their workers.”

Key PPP updates include:

  • PPP borrowers can set their PPP loan’s covered period to be any length between 8 and 24 weeks to best meet their business needs;
  • PPP loans will cover additional expenses, including operations expenditures, property damage costs, supplier costs, and worker protection expenditures;
  • The Program’s eligibility is expanded to include 501(c)(6)s, housing cooperatives, direct marketing organizations, among other types of organizations;
  • The PPP provides greater flexibility for seasonal employees;
  • Certain existing PPP borrowers can request to modify their First Draw PPP Loan amount; and
  • Certain existing PPP borrowers are now eligible to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.

A borrower is generally eligible for a Second Draw PPP Loan if the borrower:

  • Previously received a First Draw PPP Loan and will or has used the full amount only for authorized uses;
  • Has no more than 300 employees; and
  • Can demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2019 and 2020.

 

The new guidance released includes:

 

For more information on SBA’s assistance to small businesses, visit sba.gov/ppp or treasury.gov/cares.

 

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About the U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration helps power the American dream of business ownership. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.


 

Think Dutchess Ambassador- Jeff Haight

Jeff Haight- Hudson Valley Cold Pressed Oils

Profession- Owner, Hudson Valley Cold Pressed Oils

What Attracted You to Dutchess? Why do you Think Dutchess for business and life?

I’m a lifelong resident and CIA graduate. From historic mansions and scenic views to the food offerings and strong community atmosphere, there is no other place quite like Dutchess County. Dutchess County has always been both an agricultural and tourist hub, we are thrilled to be able to fit into both categories.

Tell us about Hudson Valley Cold Pressed Oils. Why is it unique?

Hudson Valley Cold Pressed Oils is a family-owned and operated sunflower-based company in Pleasant Valley, NY. We produce products from the flowers we grow on our farm. The oil we produce is cold-pressed, which ensures the highest quality, best tasting, and healthiest oil possible. We also make a sunflower flour that is high in protein and gluten-free. This makes us a nearly zero waste facility. We are probably best known for our beautiful fields which we open to the public to enjoy when the flowers are in bloom.

What innovative methods and practices have you leveraged to grow and scale the business?

We have taken the highly nutritious solids that remain after our pressing process to create our flour and have since formulated gluten-free sunflower based baking mixes. We are one of the few companies in the US that produce Sunflower flour.

What are some of your favorite local businesses or organizations in Dutchess?

Some of our favorite local businesses include Locust Hill Market in Millbrook and Fishkill Farms. Our Sunflower oil has really taken off in the skincare world. Several local skin care companies use our oil in their products.  Hudson Valley Skin Care uses the oil in most of their lotions and creams. Hummingbird Ranch makes a Propolis Skin Cream with it. Smellz Good has our sunflower oil in their soaps, lip balms, bath balms and salves. Also, a new skincare company, Take Time Out for Beauty is using it in their skincare line.

How has the pandemic impacted your business? What shifts have you made to maintain success? 

As the pandemic hit, we lost almost all of our restaurant sales and we weren’t comfortable attending many of the farmer’s markets we had been attending. We then shifted to selling online and to our small local farm stands that saw tremendous growth.

What do you anticipate for 2021?

At this point, it is hard to say what will be coming in the new year, but we can only hope that we can return to life before covid in the new year.

Why are you excited to be an Ambassador?

We are excited to be an Ambassador by sharing our story and experiences with the local community as we all can help each other to push forward and strive for success.

Think Dutchess has checked in with our Ambassadors throughout the pandemic. As the county moves forward, learn how these leaders adapted to change, championed local business and remained a critical part of keeping our county businesses working, and our friends and neighbors positive about the effects and outcomes the pandemic created.


Think Dutchess CEO, Sarah Lee, Featured on Medium’s Authority Magazine

The COVID pandemic has exposed a number of weaknesses and strengths across every industry. Leaders in all fields have been required to adapt and adjust to changing environments and community needs. The best leaders have been able to unite teams and create immediate and future impact on the industries they serve.

Sarah Lee, CEO of Think Dutchess was recently spotlighted as one of those leaders in Medium’s Authority Magazine. She has led the organization on impactful work, including recognition from the International Economic Development Council for their entrepreneurship program and marketing efforts. As CEO of Think Dutchess, she has facilitated over $2.5 billion in private investment in Dutchess County.

To learn more about Sarah’s achievements and goals to move Dutchess County forward in a post-pandemic environment, click on the photo below.

Think DUtchess CEO Sarah Lee
Think Dutchess CEO, Sarah Lee

 

Amazon Eyeing Dutchess County, Potentially Bringing 500 Jobs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT INFO:
Sarah Lee
Think Dutchess Alliance for Business
sarah@thinkdutchess.com
845.463.5400

Dutchess County Attracting Amazon and 500 New Jobs

Global e-retailer considering New York over other locations; $135 Million Investment in East Fishkill location

Dutchess County, NY—

     Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, is considering locating a logistics center in East Fishkill, NY which will create up to 500 new jobs over the next 3 years. Amazon is still considering other locations across the United States for its expansion project, but Dutchess County remains the frontrunner for the company’s relocation and $135 million investment.
Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said, “Amazon’s proposed investment in the former IBM West Campus site in East Fishkill – and with 500 new jobs – will help our county recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Job creation and growing the economy is a top priority, and a significant investment by Amazon in Dutchess County will strengthen and secure the logistics industry cluster in the Hudson Valley, while creating hundreds of jobs in the county. Despite uncertainty in the economy, this expansion will provide an important economic boost for the community and job opportunities for our residents and we’re proud that Amazon has recognized the great strides we have taken over the last nine years to make Dutchess County so attractive for business.”

The Dutchess County Industrial Development Agency is negotiating a Payment in Lieu of Tax agreement, sales tax exemption and mortgage tax exemption as well as employee training assistance. These agreements are performance-based and tied directly to job creation and investment commitments.
“The Town developed specialized zoning to attract new investment to the former IBM West Campus site that has remained fallow for over 20 years,” said Town of East Fishkill Supervisor Nicholas D’Alessandro. “Amazon is a world leader in the e-retail industry and its commitment to locate a distribution center here in Dutchess County underscores the impact of the work our team has done to improve the local business climate. The creation of 500 new jobs will provide a tremendous boost to our local economy and we look forward to a long and successful partnership in the community.”

Sarah Lee, CEO of Think Dutchess said, “It is rewarding to work on this project and to collaborate with the Town of East Fishkill to develop an attractive incentive package to encourage the company to make an investment in Dutchess County. The significant increase in employment will help re-invigorate the county’s economy and have a positive impact on local business.”
“We are very happy to be a member of the team who is putting together a financial incentive package that will bring significant new capital investment and jobs to Dutchess County,” said Tim Dean, Chairman of the Dutchess County Industrial Development Agency. “Amazon’s $135 million investment in Dutchess County is a strong example of making smart investments in companies that want to locate in our community.”

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About Think Dutchess Alliance for Business
Think Dutchess Alliance for Business, formerly Dutchess County Economic Development Corporation, is the one-stop shop for business development needs and activities in Dutchess County, New York. A business-led, nationally recognized economic development corporation, Think Dutchess’ mission is to attract, retain, and expand for-profit and not-for-profit businesses in Dutchess County. Think Dutchess’ organizational structure includes programs in business retention, expansion and attraction; financial counseling and deal structuring; zoning and permitting; commercial real estate; innovation and technology; strategic marketing and municipal advocacy. For more information about Think Dutchess Alliance for Business, visit www.thinkdutchess.com

 


 

Winners Announced for the 2020 Virtual Business Excellence Awards

Think Dutchess to Host First Virtual Business Excellence Awards

 Winners represent a diverse selection of industry leaders.

 

 

November 3, 2020

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. –—

 

Think Dutchess Alliance for Business will host its first virtual Business Excellence Awards with a video premiere set to release on November 19, 2020 at 5:30 pm. The awards, which typically gather nearly 400 of the region’s top C-suite executives, business leaders and government officials, will continue its tradition to honor the businesses in Dutchess County making significant contributions toward economic development.

“This year, perhaps more than ever, it is important that we celebrate the success and continued growth of our community in the face of the global pandemic,” said Think Dutchess Alliance for Business CEO, Sarah Lee. “Our winners represent the core values of the awards in displaying excellence, innovation, collaboration, service and resilience.”

This year’s winners represent key leaders that have made an impact on growing the economy, maintaining jobs, improving safety and maintaining our overall health and safety despite unprecedented challenges. They are:

  • Innovator of the Year: Hudson Valley Concierge ServiceA local concierge and driver service company that’s quickly grown while integrating modern communication technology to assure client safety;
  • Nonprofit of the Year: Community Family Development- The City of Poughkeepsie’s oldest nonprofit daycare center that proved quality childcare is not only essential for children, but also to maintaining a healthy workforce;
  • Small Business of the Year: Story Screen Beacon Theater- A boutique cinema experience that successfully pivoted to bring the community together in a safe way while attracting tourism.
  • Large Business of the Year: Crepini A food manufacturing company that navigated growing pains to bring new jobs and safe manufacturing to Dutchess County’s food hub.
  • The Grand Award- Business of the Year, Central Hudson Gas & ElectricOne of Dutchess County’s largest employers, the gas and energy company has been a critical agency in attracting and supporting business, extending essential grants to support the community in a time of crisis, and an avid supporter of programs to encourage economic growth.
  • Special Recognition Award- Mary Kay Vrba For her more than 25 years of dedication and service, Vrba has been instrumental to building the tourism industry in Dutchess County and developing it into a powerful economic development driver.

To allow guests to celebrate the winners safely at home and support local business in the process, special “At-Home Celebration Kit” tickets offer three special menus that can be ordered and picked up by the ticket holder on the night of the event. For more information visit https:/thinkdutchess.com. Tickets are on sale now

Sponsorships, congratulatory messages and advertising opportunities are also available at https://thinkdutchess.com/sponsorship/.

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About Think Dutchess Alliance for Business

Think Dutchess Alliance for Business, formerly Dutchess County Economic Development Corporation, is the one-stop shop for business development needs and activities in Dutchess County, New York. A business-led, nationally recognized economic development corporation, Think Dutchess’ mission is to attract, retain, and expand for-profit and not-for-profit businesses in Dutchess County. Think Dutchess’ organizational structure includes programs in business retention, expansion and attraction; financial counseling and deal structuring; zoning and permitting; commercial real estate; innovation and technology; strategic marketing and municipal advocacy. For more information about Think Dutchess Alliance for Business, visit www.thinkdutchess.com


 

Think Dutchess Digital Ambassador- Richard Romano

Richard Romano- Screamin’ Onionz

Profession:

We own Aha! American Healthy Appetite and we make shelf-stable jarred food products produced with whole ingredients from the Hudson Valley. Our signature product is Screamin’ Onionz which are NY State onions slow-cooked in craft sauces. We use 4 whole ingredients, are gluten-free, all-natural and have no added sugar. They replace raw onions in recipes, so they save time in the kitchen.

What attracted you to Dutchess?

I grew up in Hopewell Junction, but came back with my family after 20 years in the hotel & restaurant profession in Manhattan. Dutchess County always felt like home to me and now its great to share it with my wife and kids.  

How has Dutchess County influenced you and your professional role?

My Dad bought a restaurant when I was 13. I worked there every weekend, along with a paper route, and all summer long, until I graduated high school and left for culinary school. I also worked in the kitchen at IBM Poughkeepsie and helped to serve thousands of people a day. This prepared me as I headed off to Manhattan to become an Executive Chef, General Manager, Director of Operations and to eventually assist struggling restaurants with distressed property turnaround and later opening a bunch of restaurants for notable chefs and restaurateurs. Some of which ran the highest-grossing restaurants in the country. Dutchess County provided me with the base I needed to succeed.

Favorite Dutchess County past-time or activity?

We love to be outdoors for a nice walk, riding bikes along the rail trail and hiking, when we have time. I love watching the stars at night, identifying constellations, and looking at the moon with my children. I used to love doing that as a kid.  

Favorite Dutchess County eatery?

I really have to say that our favorite eateries are the ones that support our Screamin’ Onionz. They really helped us understand the versatility and ease of use of our product which led to creating them in gallons. This led to us approaching private and public schools. We thank them so much for their faith in us.

What do you think would be a surprise to anyone visiting Dutchess for the first time? 

I would say they’d be surprised at all the farms, farm markets and specialty producers utilizing locally grown products for their creations.

Advice to anyone visiting or looking to do business in Dutchess?

I would let them know to look into the Dutchess County organizations supporting small business growth here. We didn’t realize the overwhelming amount of assistance and programs here geared towards propping up businesses.  For us, the Think Dutchess Pitch Competition led us to be a Think Dutchess Ambassador which led us to the Hudson Valley Agribusiness Corporation’s “Farm and Food Funding Accelerator.” The Think Dutchess pitch competition really prepared us to go in front of potential investors, to hopefully procure investment for the growth of our company within the next few months. 

 

Think Dutchess checked in with our Ambassadors during the NY State Pause from the COVID-19 pandemic. As the county moved forward, learn how these leaders adapted to change, championed local business and remained a critical part of keeping our county businesses working, and our friends and neighbors positive about the effects and outcomes the pandemic created.

 


Think Dutchess Statement Regarding National Dialogue on Racial Justice

These last few weeks have been difficult. We have struggled to find the words to express how saddened we are over the losses of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and countless others because there are no words that make sense of re-occurring racism and unequal justice. We join our country in grieving these horrific events and stand with our black friends, neighbors, businesses and organizations, in Dutchess County and throughout the country, to fight for safety and equality for everyone.

We at Think Dutchess are proud to serve such a diverse community of business owners, nonprofits and residents. As an economic development organization, our mission is to improve the lives of our community. We are proud to partner and support our local organizations that have a shared mission and goals to educate, empower and support a diverse business environment.

Our country has responded to the collective calls of our communities to address issues of racism and social injustice. Peaceful protests on June 3, 2020, in the City of Poughkeepsie and throughout Dutchess County were a wonderful example of how our community can come together to listen and begin transformative conversations toward change. Think Dutchess stands in solidarity with organizations and partners like Community Matters 2, Nubian Directions, Northern Dutchess NAACP, The Youth One Stop, Middle Main and Hudson River Housing which are leading these conversations.

Think Dutchess is committed to facilitating an equitable economic recovery in Dutchess County for all people, businesses, and communities.  We are listening and willing to talk about the issues affecting your business and your community. You can count on Think Dutchess to support you through this time and to stand in solidarity to fight for equity and economic justice – today and always.

 


Think Dutchess Digital Ambassador- Dana Jones

Dana Jones- Accessadoor

Profession: Founder and CEO of Accessadoor, LLC

What attracted you to Dutchess? I was born and raised in Dutchess County. After being able to experience the area as a resident first I knew it was the exact environment I needed to be in to start my company.

How has Dutchess County influenced you and your professional role? After growing up here and having a solid foundation of family and friends, it has allowed me to explore different interests and passions which eventually led me to becoming an entrepreneur. With all of the available resources available to small businesses and those just starting their entrepreneurial journey I knew I was exactly where I needed to be.

Favorite Dutchess County past-time or activity? One of my favorite things to do in my free time is to explore all the new restaurants and breweries in the area. It is a great way to spend time with friends and find new places to visit.

Favorite Dutchess County eatery? My favorite eatery in Dutchess County is Lola’s

What do you think would be a surprise to anyone visiting Dutchess for the first time? Well growing up in the area I think the one thing that has surprised me over the years is its ability to attract large corporations in addition to its constant ability to evolve and improve the area for people of all ages and interests.

Advice to anyone visiting or looking to do business in Dutchess? For anyone looking to do business in the area, reach out to other business owners. Everyone is extremely helpful and willing to help each other. It is a really tight-knit community and we all want to see each other succeed so don’t be afraid to ask around and get first-hand feedback.

 

Think Dutchess checked in with our Ambassadors during the NY State Pause from the COVID-19 pandemic. As the county moved forward, learn how these leaders adapted to change, championed local business and remained a critical part of keeping our county businesses working, and our friends and neighbors positive about the effects and outcomes the pandemic created.

 

 


ONE UNIFIED VISION

A premier business-led organization, Think Dutchess Alliance for Business brings together 11 agency partners creating a one-stop shop for your site selection, financing, incentives, permitting and advocacy, strategic planning and counseling, marketing and networking needs.