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California Democrats Hope To Trim 'Windfall" Federal Tax Cut For Businesses

Tax and Budget Reform

Appalled by federal tax cuts for businesses, passed by Republicans alone last year, two Democratic members of the California State Assembly have proposed an amendment to the state constitution that would impose a "windfall" tax surcharge on corporations that earn more than $1 million. The money would go into a new "Middle Class Fiscal Relief Fund" that would pay for tax relief and other projects to benefit low- and moderate-income communities.

The amendment, though, may put another business group, the Small Business Majority in something of a bind. Though...

Black Business Loans Up to $100,000 or More With This New Resource

Houston Style Magazine
Access to Capital

Research also reveals that black-owned firms are less likely to receive loans, receive lower loan amounts and pay higher interest rates than non-black firms. But the national advocacy group Small Business Majority hopes to make accessing capital easier for those firms by leading Venturize into its next phase. Venturize is a public effort launched in 2016 to help small business owners make better decisions when pursuing financing.

Call on legislators to pass 2018 FAMLI Act for sake of Colorado small businesses

The Daily Sentinel
Family Medical Leave Insurance

As a small business owner, I know how difficult it is to take time off for medical or family leave, and I struggle to extend paid leave benefits to my employees. My business, A la Carte Gifts and Baskets, could greatly benefit from a state paid leave program.

Another Voice: Trump administration jeopardizing health care for California’s small businesses

Sacramento Business Journal

President Donald Trump's administration recently proposed a rule that would make it easier for insurance companies to sell health insurance across state lines, an idea Trump’s supporters have argued would lower health care costs for small businesses.

In reality, however, Trump and his allies are using small businesses as cover for a policy that would weaken the Affordable Care Act and, in turn, the health insurance marketplaces that many California entrepreneurs need to access quality, affordable health care. If the proposed rule is finalized it could increase premiums,...

Money an issue as many businesses don’t give caregiver leave

Associated Press
Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave

Paid time off to care for ill family members is a benefit many employees wish for, but it’s hard to come by — especially at very small companies with limited financial resources. But a quarter-century after the Family and Medical Leave Act gave employees at larger businesses up to 12 weeks of unpaid time off for their medical needs or those of family members, a growing movement aims to help staffers at small businesses get paid leave.

Forcing staffers to choose between caring for a family member and their paychecks doesn’t make sense to Lisa Goodbee. She gives the 17 staffers at her...

Local Workers Consider W-4 Adjustment in the Wake of New Tax Plan

WKTV News Channel 2
Tax and Budget Reform, General Small Business

Upon hiring, workers fill out a W-4 form with their company's payroll department, informing the government how much they'd like withheld from their paycheck. With more workers now opting for the standard deduction and more exemptions no longer available, employees who receive more money in their paycheck each week may not be prepared to see a smaller refund at the end of the year. The process is complicated, and the owner of Bagel Grove in Utica wants to help her employees understand their finances. "If you're someone that has very few claims on their W-4, less is...

Black Business Loans Up to $100,000 or More With This New Resource

Black Enterprise
Access to Capital, Women's Economic Empowerment, General Small Business

The national advocacy group Small Business Majority hopes to make accessing capital easier for those firms by leading Venturize into its next phase.

D.C. business community not surrendering the paid leave fight

Washington Business Journal
Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave

The D.C. Chamber of Commerce has no intention of letting go of the paid leave issue. Erik Rettig, the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Director of national advocacy group Small Business Majority, which supported the legislation, said he's spoken with D.C. small business owners who are pleased the law is moving forward. They have been frustrated, he said, by the uncertainty.

"They all support this type of program and frankly, it's been a year since the law was passed and a lot of these folks really want to know that there won't be repeal and replace going forward,"...

Small Business Majority to Lead the Next Phase of Venturize

Opportunity Finance Network
Access to Capital, Entrepreneurship, General Small Business

In June 2016, OFN launched Venturize, a public awareness campaign designed to help small business owners make empowered decisions when seeking financing for their businesses. The campaign achieved its goals of generating 75 million impressions and reaching 330,000 small businesses through its educational platform Venturize.org.

OFN is now excited to report that Small Business Majority—whose mission is to empower America's entrepreneurs to build a thriving and inclusive economy—is leading Venturize into its next phase to provide even more resources to entrepreneurs and small...

Tax bill provision designed to spur paid family leave to lower-wage workers

Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave

Under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, employers with 50 or more workers generally must allow eligible employees to take unpaid leave for up to 12 weeks annually for specified reasons. These include the birth or adoption of a child, caring for your own or a family member’s serious health condition, or leave for military caregiving or deployment. An individual’s job is protected during such leaves.

A tax credit that can be claimed at the end of the year is unlikely to encourage small businesses to offer paid family and medical leave, said Erik Rettig, an expert on family...

These 5 bills before California lawmakers seek to expand health coverage, lower costs

Southern California Public Radio

This week, advocates of moving California to a single-payer health care system renewed their push in Sacramento. On Wednesday, hundreds of them crowded into a hearing of a special State Assembly committee that's exploring whether and how to bring universal health care to the state.

John Arensmeyer, CEO of Small Business Majority, encouraged lawmakers to keep Association Health Plans out of the California small group health insurance market. President Trump loosened rules governing these health plans. The president argues they spur competition. Arensmeyer and others believe...

Starting Sunday, businesses in Maryland must provide paid sick leave

The Washington Post
Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave

Many business owners in Maryland are scrambling to prepare for the state’s new sick-leave policy, which takes effect Sunday despite a veto last year from Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and a last-ditch attempt by the state Senate to delay it. Some business owners say they don’t know whether their employees qualify for the benefit, or wonder if their existing plans comply with the requirements. Others are concerned about a perceived lack of guidance from the state, or what will happen if they make an honest mistake.

Ed Snodgrass, who operates a Harford County wholesale nursery that employs...

Raising consumer spending is the best thing for our economy

Pennsylvania Cable Network
Minimum Wage

Small Business Majority did a scientific poll that said 60% of small businesses are for raising the minimum wage to at least $12 an hour. So in terms of stimulating our economy, this is the number one way to get people decent pay, more jobs and more sales to businesses.

Trying To Goad More Small Business Bank Loans? Somebody Will Object.

Access to Capital, Entrepreneurship, Economy

John Arensmeyer, CEO of the liberal-leaning Small Business Majority, says that while his group supports changing the law to increase the amount of small business lending, "we want to make sure that any changes maintain the CRA’s focus by benefiting small businesses in underserved areas."

Business leaders hope Trump tackles infrastructure, immigration reform in State of the Union

The Business Journals
Government Accountability, Healthcare, Immigration, General Small Business

John Arensmeyer, founder and CEO of the advocacy organization Small Business Majority, said he would like to hear Trump discuss moves to strengthen health care for small businesses.

“The health care marketplaces must be bolstered,” Arensmeyer said. “This includes guaranteeing payments to insurers for cost-sharing subsidies, which help many solo entrepreneurs and small business employees afford health coverage.” Arensmeyer went on to say that Small Business Majority recommends reinstating the Affordable Care Act’s risk corridor program to help protect against carriers overpricing or...

In 2018, Trump must be the small-business champion he claimed to be

The Hill
Government Accountability, Tax and Budget Reform, General Small Business

President Donald Trump’s first year in office was deeply disappointing for small business owners. While he promised to advocate for small employers when he took office, he instead focused on a tax bill that benefits large corporations far more than Main Street small businesses.

But 2018 is an opportunity for a fresh start, and if President Trump truly wants to tackle small business issues this year, there are several key policies he could promote that would help America’s job creators succeed.

His best employee is an inmate from a prison he didn’t want built

The Washington Post

Ron Nelsen has been in the garage door business since 1976. He can't recall a time when it's been this difficult to find workers for his family business, Pioneer Overhead Door in Las Vegas.

When his assistant handed him Ian Black's résumé in April, it seemed like a godsend. Black had more than a decade of experience.

Then Nelsen noticed that all of Black's recent jobs were at a state prison.

Black is an inmate at Casa Grande, a work-release facility that's a seven-minute walk from Pioneer Overheard Door. Nelsen knew the place well. He and other...

Tax Credit Aims To Boost Availability Of Paid Family Leave, But Will It Work?

Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave, Tax and Budget Reform

Tucked into the new tax law is a provision that offers companies a tax credit if they provide paid family and medical leave for their lower-wage workers.

Erik Rettig, an expert on family leave policies at the Small Business Majority, which advocates for those firms on national policy, says a tax credit, claimed at the end of the year, is unlikely to encourage small businesses to offer paid family and medical leave.
"It isn't going to help the family business that has to absorb the costs of this employee while they're gone," Rettig says.

How One Mom Changed Lyft’s Paid Family Leave Policy

Family Medical Leave Insurance, Paid Sick Leave

With little fanfare, Lyft recently significantly expanded the amount of time its workers will be able to take paid family and medical leave, one of a small but growing number of U.S. companies stepping up to meet the needs of the modern workforce. Though a majority of children are now being raised in families where all parents work, only a handful—14 percent—have paid family leave.

Many small businesses, including members of the Small Business Majority, support a federal plan because they don’t have the resources to provide paid leave on their own.

Where there's equality, there's a better chance for economic progress

Crain’s Cleveland Business
LGBT Nondiscrimination

Forbes calls attention to the latest edition of the Queer Money podcast, which looks at how Ohio Business Competes is working to advance the economic argument that LGBTQ equality is good for business. Here are a few highlights, via Forbes:

A recent study by the Small Business Majority showed that the desire to improve LGBTQ protections "isn't just a big-city, large-corporation need. The Small Business Majority found that 65% of small business owners, those with 100 employees or fewer, said they don't believe a business should be able to discriminate against potential...