Our Opinion: Entrepreneurial itch? Get business-startup advice in Northeastern Pennsylvania

August 18th, 2015 7:36 am

If you’re itching to start a business in Pennsylvania, consider hanging your shingle in Moosic.

The Lackawanna County borough ranked second on a list of the state’s best spots to open shop, according to NerdWallet, a website dispensing information and data on personal finance. Its ratings, which took 145 places into consideration, assigned the top spot to Allegheny County’s West Mifflin.

Dickson City came in at No. 16. Other Northeastern Pennsylvania municipalities appearing in the top 25 included Wilkes-Barre (20th) and Kingston (24th). Scranton landed near the middle of the pack, at 65th.

We can’t vouch for NerdWallet’s methodology. Oftentimes, online “best-of” listings seem aimed at drawing attention and Web traffic rather than imparting scientifically sound, or even useful, information.

In any case, entrepreneurship – much like marriage and cell phone contracts – is not to be entered into lightly. In all likelihood, your money and a good deal of your self-esteem will be at stake. Obstacles to your success could include, among many other factors, the Keystone State’s unwieldy corporate income tax as well as what NerdWallet characterizes as a “difficult permitting and regulatory system to get up and running.”

Our best advice: Find a mentor with an established and profitable operation, or connect with one of the region’s resources intended to help newbies on the path to business ownership. Better yet, do both.

NerdWallet rightly noted that Pennsylvania fosters business start-ups through programs such as Ben Franklin Technology Partners and a statewide network of Partnerships for Regional Economic Performance.

Locally, you also can gain invaluable information from the Small Business Development Center at Wilkes University and possibly worm your way into one of the Wyoming Valley’s business incubators, such as the newly created Wilkes Enterprise Center.

Don’t let your big idea for a new business – be it based in Moosic, Mocanaqua or elsewhere in the region – simply fizzle. Draw a blueprint, consult with the pros and, if your research and personal resolve measure up, pursue the dream.