November 23, 2015

Small Businesses Deserve Our Support

Guest column submitted by U.S. Senator Mike Crapo

It takes know-how, determination and calculated risk to turn ideas into successful small businesses, especially to keep businesses going and grow them over generations.  Thankfully, there is no shortage of these characteristics in Idaho.  The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Advocacy reports that Idaho alone has 149,476 small businesses that employ more than half of the state's private workforce.  Shopping at local small businesses and creating a competitive national economy that better enables them to succeed are some ways we can support local job creators.    

In addition to providing jobs and boosting our economy, small businesses sponsor youth sports teams, support local service organizations, back families who have faced tragedy and much more.  They are the heart of our communities.  Their presence is the bellwether of the vitality of downtowns.  We need small businesses, and we need them to succeed and grow to improve our nation's economy.  

Unfortunately, small businesses face considerable challenges to remain profitable and grow jobs.  The SBA also foundthat 3,035 establishments opened in Idaho in the 1 stquarter of 2014, while 2,490 closed in the state of Idaho during that time.  The cost of federal tax and regulatory compliance are among the many challenges small business owners must overcome to succeed.     

Fellow Idaho Senator Jim Risch and I are original co-sponsors of a bipartisan resolution that designated November 28, 2015 as "Small Business Saturday"-a day to increase awareness of the value of locally owned small businesses and their impact on our economy and encourage consumers to shop locally.  Nationally, it has been recognized that small businesses represent 99.7 percent of all businesses with employees in the United States and employ more than 48.5 percent of the employees in our county's private sector. 

Promoting small businesses is a good step, and substantial federal policy changes are also needed to create a more business-friendly America.  This requires removing excessive federal regulation and fixing our broken tax code.  We must simplify the tax code and lower rates for all individuals, families and businesses.  We also must scrap overly-burdensome and costly regulations that require small businesses to wade through seemingly endless paperwork to comply without appreciable benefits.  Removing the disincentives of high taxes and costly regulation will better enable small businesses to create jobs and help grow our economy. 

I will continue to advocate advancing legislation and federal policy changes that better enable America's small businesses to succeed and Americans to turn their ideas into jobs.  We must better support these job creators.     

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