The District of Columbia Resource Center (www.brc.dc.gov) is now offering a complete business licensing process online. Owners can go online to this secure site and obtain a Master Business License (MBL) from home.
According to Theresa Lewis, deputy director for operations at the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) and creator of the program, businesses and nonprofit leaders that generate more than $2,000 annually in gross receipts are required under the Omnibus Regulatory Reform Acts I and II to obtain a MBL. This site allows business owners to apply online for a MBL or trade name, obtain a certificate of occupancy, register with the Tax & Revenue Office, or find a business profile. Along with five other criteria, interested businesses must have a valid MasterCard or Visa to pay all applicable fees online.
God goes Online. Ecofaith (www.eco faith.com) is a new Internet service provider (ISP) that sprung directly out of a black church initiative to service African Americans in churches, homes, and schools in order to help bridge the digital divide. The organization offers the service at $18.95 per month, which includes 100MB of storage space, 24/7 technical support, unlimited e-mail with up to 10 accounts per user, computer discounts, and their own branded instant messaging service.
Ecofaith encourages its users to integrate their spiritual lives into their secular Internet and technology use. According to Orchid R. Burnside, senior vice president of interactive services, 90% of Ecofaith subscribers are black church parishioners. Burnside also says that the organization is offering two new features to their subscribers: Ecofaith recently partnered with Dell to sell new computers at discounted prices and plans to offer DSL at an additional cost.
Nubonyx (www.nubonyx.com) is another ISP that has entered the fray. The company charges $19.95 for their service, which includes free setup, up to five email accounts, 10MB of Web space, 24/7 technical support, discounted reconditioned Meguhe computers, and a range of payment options.
Nubonyx covers a wide range of news pertaining to minority communities, particularly the black diaspora. The Urban News Center offers daily headlines from North Africa, South Africa, Mexico, and Latin America. It also provides links to several minority magazines.