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Tuesday, Sep 26, 2023

NFIB Reforms Are Simple and Clear

As Congress and state legislatures return this month from their Christmas break, lawmakers will be turning their attention to new legislation affecting business. Whether that legislation benefits or hampers business awaits to be seen.

The National Federation of Independent Businesses has issued a legislative agenda it believes is necessary to keeping American small businesses healthy and growing. Without these changes, the NFIB fears the continued growth of the economy , which is largely due to small business , could be affected.

Among the reforms the NFIB believes are needed:

Regulatory Reform: Reform outdated workplace safety rules that were established at a time when large companies dominated the work force. At the same time, make regulations , which cost small firms 50 percent more to implement than large firms , less costly to small business, and stop pushing minimum wage hikes that force small firms to reduce their work force.

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NFIB also warns that a proposed expansion of the Family and Medical Leave Act could do away with the exemption for small businesses with less than 50 employees.

Tort Reform: With defending lawsuits costing small firms an average of $100,000, one frivolous suit can put a small company out of business. NFIB wants to see a reasonable cap placed on punitive damages and damages awarded for pain and suffering.

NFIB also maintains that the current structure of the 1980 Superfund environmental clean-up law places an excessive burden on small businesses. They recommend removing most small firms from the threat of unfair litigation, and providing those remaining subject to suits with an equitable settlement process.

Tax Reform: NFIB is calling for simplified and lower taxation, beginning with sunsetting the current federal tax code. It also suggests repealing the estate tax, also known as the “death tax,” partly due to the number of businesses and jobs it kills off each year.

Health Care Reform: To make health care benefits healthy again, NFIB opposes more mandates for them. Such mandates, NFIB charges, result in higher premiums to employers and employees both.

Small businesses should also be allowed to band together to increase their buying power when shopping for health insurance. Individuals should also be allowed to deduct the cost of their health insurance.

The simplicity of the NFIB agenda makes seeing its virtues a no-brainer. Let’s hope lawmakers in Washington and Sacramento have the sense to see it, too.


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