The state Senate Commerce Committee advanced a joint resolution Monday that would designate the month of August each year as “Black Business Month” in New Jersey.

The resolution, SJR91, sponsored by Sen. Angela McKnight (D-Jersey City), cleared the committee in a 5-0 vote.

“Black businesses across the state are driving economic growth, sparking innovation and revitalizing their communities,” McKnight said. “These businesses are overcoming the odds, and their success empowers other Black entrepreneurs to pursue their dreams.

“Designating August as Black Business Month will acknowledge the tremendous contributions of Black businesses to New Jersey’s culture and economy, and will promote greater economic freedom for Black New Jerseyans.”

“Black Business Month” was established nationally in August 2004, and provides an opportunity for governments, community leaders and business professionals to focus on ways to support Black business owners.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Black-owned businesses account for 10% of all businesses in the U.S., or roughly 2 million companies.

For the last several years, businesses owned by Black individuals have grown faster than overall business growth in the U.S.