“If a small businessman has to cut back his employees work schedule because of ‘Sick Paid Time’ just to keep the doors open, that’s a morale killer.”
Texas Insider Report: AUSTIN, Texas — “Since the president passed the Tax Cuts & Jobs Relief Act, which helped businesses all across the board, there’s been an increase ever since in our Small Business Optimism Index. Business owners are wanting to compensate their employees more, expand their business more, and put more back into the community. And you know what? The market drives that, not government. Businesses want to invest back into their companies in the form of more & better benefits, and with more pay,” NFIB Texas’ Director Annie Spilman tells the Texas Insider Radio Show’s Jim Cardle.
“But then on the other hand, the City of Austin & other Texas Cities have been pressured by outside labor groups, national labor unions, who’ve said themselves and have already been bragging about it, that to penetrate the south they need to make sure benchmark policies & ordinances are passed at the local level.
“Regulations are just a tax on Small Businesses… It costs them 36% more to to implement a regulation that it does a larger business,” Spilman said.
“If a small businessman has to adjust and cut back his employees work schedule because of ‘Sick Paid Time’ just to keep the doors open, that’s a morale killer. Morale is everything to these employers, and for a lot of our small businesses, their employees are family. That’s why NFIB is a lead plaintiff in the lawsuit against Paid Sick Leave… and guess who’s exempt from those regulations? Labor unions.
“What we do is ballot our members, and they actually tell us what we’re going to be working on at the Capitol. We’re literally getting feedback directly from the small business owner on issues that range from taxes, to regulatory reform, and they’re telling us exactly what we need to be working on. We rely on our balloting system, and its scientific.
“We’ve never seen our membership so upset and concerned as they are over this regulation, and its because its so broad, its so vague, it’s like a ‘Gotchya’ policy that’s really even worse than is being advertised. Small businesses don’t have in-house lawyers or HR Departments. If they accidentally violate it, and this is what’s most egregious about it, these cities will be able to subpoena the employer’s private records if just an allegation of violation is made.
“That’s why we’re going to be dealing with it in the Texas Legislature, where they want to pass some pre-emption legislation because its not within a city’s jurisdiction to regulate private employers in the state over labor or employment matters,” said Spilman.
“Small businesses in Texas employ over 4 million people, and they’re creating 2-out-of-every-3 net new jobs. They represent about 98% of all businesses in Texas that have employees. So if you put a small business out of business, that means those employees are not taking home a paycheck.
“We represent independently owned and operated businesses throughout the state and nationally, and in Texas we’ve got about 20,000 small business owners and members. Nationally, we represent about 300,000. Our membership represents a cross-section of the economy, which is why we share a healthy perspective with legislators — we represent people in the manufacturing industry, the construction industry, retail, the services industry, you name it, we represent it.
“And the job never ends when you’re a small business owner. When you do something to hurt a small business, they’re the engines of the economy,” said Spilman.
“A couple years ago, as we polled our members, the biggest problems & priorities were: Uncertainty Over Economic Conditions; Uncertainty Over Government Actions; and Concern about Unreasonable Government Regulations. Those things have always been out there hindering the small businesses owners in Texas, and the nation frankly, to the point that they couldn’t hire, they couldn’t plan to increase wages, all because these concerns were hanging over their head.
“If you think about it moving forward, when President Trump took office he immediately started to make changes at the Department of Labor, the EPA, he made some Executive Orders and passed the Tax Cuts Bill. So now what we’re seeing is that the forecasts look good. Business owners are starting to feel, ‘The economy’s starting to turn around, I don’t think this president’s going to over-regulate us.’ So they have confidence. Confidence breeds expansion,” said Spilman.
“When small businesses are upbeat, they will invest in and buy equipment, they’ll invest in new employees and open new locations, and that’s what drives the state’s economy overall.
“For a lot of our small businesses, their employees are family. Their community means everything to them, and they invest more in them. Its just a fact,” Spilman said.