Aaron L. Peters, CPA
President and CEO, Peters & Associates PC, Falls Church
How is the economy faring in your part of the state?
In the D.C. area, there’s always a concern around what happens with the government, but in general, it’s faring very well, and one of the areas of significant growth and opportunity is in small business, which is where I spend most of my time.
What local industry/sector do you think has potential for growth?
The technology space in this area has a huge opportunity. We’re definitely not Silicon Valley or New York yet in that aspect, but we have a highly educated population and a young workforce that can really make a huge impact.
What’s the biggest challenge to doing business in your area?
I’ve have to say that regulation is really stifling on local businesses — with people who cross from D.C./Maryland/Virginia each day, businesses are often responsible for administration in the three jurisdictions, as well as many localities that also have requirements (and costs) for businesses.
What impact would a recession have on businesses in your area?
Small businesses are dependent on demand — they can often create it through innovation, but a recession in an area such as ours that has such a high cost of living could make it really tough for businesses to survive and would likely have a negative impact on the growth of businesses and innovation.
What are the top two factors that have had the biggest impact on attracting business to your region?
This one is pretty simple to me — 1) tax policy/incentives and 2) availability of an educated workforce.