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Oregon Rule Change Would Allow Small Businesses To Use Crowdfunding

M.O. Stevens
/
Wikimedia

Businesses in Oregon could soon take advantage of the crowdfunding phenomenon.

State regulators Wednesday heard from the public on proposed rules to let smaller companies raise cash from Oregon investors. Think Kickstarter -- except instead of making a donation you'd be making an actual investment in a small business.

It’s a workaround of federal rules -- with a $250,000 limit per company. Small business advocate Jarvez Hall said he thinks the new policy could open doors to people of color who can have a harder time accessing traditional sources of capital.

"It kind of takes the stigma around color and race and some of those things out of the equation, and it brings it right back to do you have an idea, do you have a passion, do people believe in it. And if they do, they support it,” Hall said.

The Oregon crowdfunding rule could take effect as soon as next month. Washington state is rolling out a similar policy. A spokesperson for the Washington Department of Financial Institutions says the agency has yet to receive a crowdfunding filing since the rules took effect November 1.

Copyright 2014 Northwest News Network

Chris Lehman covers the Oregon state capitol for JPR as part of the Northwest News Network, a group of 12 Northwest public radio organizations which collaborate on regional news coverage. Chris graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He began his career producing arts features for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana and has been a reporter/announcer for NPR station WNIJ in DeKalb, Illinois. Chris has also reported from overseas, filing stories from Iraq, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Uganda.
Chris Lehman
Chris Lehman graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He landed his first job less than a month later, producing arts stories for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana. Three years later he headed north to DeKalb, Illinois, where he worked as a reporter and announcer for NPR–affiliate WNIJ–FM. In 2006 he headed west to become the Salem Correspondent for the Northwest News Network.