the blueprint


The majority of Howard County businesses are small businesses with less than 25 employees. The future economic vitality of our county relies upon our ability to support these businesses, and grow new, innovative businesses in industries of the future.

As county executive, Calvin Ball has launched several initiatives targeted toward supporting small, minority, women, and veteran-owned businesses and growing Howard County’s innovation economy. On his 100th day in office, County Executive Ball signed a memorandum of understanding with the Howard County Economic Development Authority to make the Innovation Center at Gateway a reality. Other accomplishments include:


  • Hosting the county’s first ever small business summit, which was attended by over 160 people.
  • Coordinating the very first Local Business Certification Workshop to provide local business owners with assistance in the Howard County procurement process. Since taking office, County Executive Ball has doubled the number of firms registered and certified in the Local Business Initiative program and increased the amount of county dollars spent on projects with certified local businesses enterprises by 56 percent.
  • Creating “Long Reach Rising”, a swift, short-term renovation and long-term renewal strategy for the Long Reach Village Center.