Small businesses make up the backbone of the American economy, and in no place is this more apparent than Ohio. There are nearly one million small businesses in our state. More than two million of us — one-fifth of Ohio’s population — are employed by small businesses. We have some of the highest numbers of self-employed workers, including women and veterans, in the country. The ability of small and independent businesses to start here and grow is crucial to the economic health of our state, our communities and workers themselves. But there’s a regulatory barrier we need to address.
Government regulations have a direct impact on the ability of independent businesses to keep the lights on, make payroll and create new Ohio jobs. The regulatory process in Washington should be designed to serve the public and keep people safe in a thriving economy. Instead, it is characterized by moving goalposts, complicated paperwork and overwhelming compliance costs — the sort that can make a small business go under and intimidate others away from business ownership altogether. Large corporations can survive in this environment. They have the resources — and lawyers — needed to absorb losses in time and money. Not every small business can.
Personally, I’ve been a Logan County entrepreneur since I was 17. I now own four local businesses and employ almost 40 people, including various subcontractors. In my own experience, navigating and complying with regulations is the single biggest challenge I face as a small business owner. I know I’m not alone in this and I know it can’t be what our lawmakers intended.
- Written by Jason Duff