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MEP, SBA, Others Offer Y2K Action Week, Help

March 12, 1999

The Small Business Administration (SBA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Manufacturing Extension Partnership Program (MEP) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and several other federal agencies have declared March 29 through April 2, 1999 as "Y2K Action Week." Several educational events and technical assistance opportunities are planned around the country, including a 2-hour satellite broadcast by the Department of Housing and Urban Development that will be hosted by Housing Authorities across America.

During the period, several Small Business Development Centers, MEP affiliates and SBA offices throughout the country will hold educational seminars, workshops and presentations on the Year 2000 computer problem and protective measures one can take. A complete state-by-state list of Y2K Action Week activities can be viewed on the SBA Y2K website: http://www.sbaonline.sba.gov/y2k/

Also, NIST MEP, USDA and the SMA have established the Y2K Help Center for Small Business, a free source of assistance and technical support to help companies address the computer problem. The center, housed in the NIST offices in Gaithersburg MD, has developed and is disseminating freely a Y2K Self-Help Tool, a Microsoft Access or Excel-based software program that allows businesses to conduct an inventory of computer equipment, identify core business systems and rate their importance to the survival of the business, develop contingency plans, and plan and manage remediation projects.

The Y2K Help Center also will help small businesses determine whether or not their computer products and equipment will have a Y2K problem by providing information on equipment manufacturers’ and vendors’ databases than contain Y2K compliance information.

The Y2K Help Center website is http://y2khelp.nist.gov. Most MEP websites also have links to the Center and additional Y2K resources.