• U.S.

In Brief: Jan. 1, 2000

2 minute read
Julie Rawe

E-SCAM SLAM Government agencies have taken action against some 600 Internet outfits, alleging that many are pyramid schemes posing as marketing companies, which require hefty investments from participants. Last month the FTC asked a judge to shut down 2Xtreme, which persuaded some 60,000 recruits to buy expensive marketing kits for New Age products. Their earnings were tied to developing “downlines,” i.e., new recruits. For more info, visit www.consumer.gov

BREEDING GROUND Where are the best places to start a company? The West and Southeast, says a study of entrepreneurial hot spots. Major airports and universities are big draws; a “nice” place to live counts too.

TOP METRO AREAS FOR START-UPS

1. Phoenix 2. Salt Lake City 3. Atlanta 4. Raleigh-Durham 5. Indianapolis 6. Washington 7. Memphis 8. Orlando 9. Dallas-Ft. Worth 10. Nashville 11. Denver 12. Louisville 13. Minneapolis 14. Charlotte, N.C. 15. Grand Rapids 16. Birmingham 17. San Diego 18. Houston

Source: Cognetics, Inc. E-GOVERNMENT Starting this week, you can pay parking tickets, utility bills and local real estate taxes online as govWorks.com ushers e-commerce into the public sector. The catch? There’s a transaction fee, which is waived–and you can even shave a few bucks off your tab–if you apply for a credit card or get an auto-insurance quote. Want to e-mail a city-council member or find out who fixes potholes? The site helps plug you into local government and maintains nationwide databases on government job listings and auctions.

–By Julie Rawe

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