By JEFFREY HAGE
The small business owner is key to the economic future of Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District, according to Congressman Chip Cravaack.
But uncertainty in the future of affordable healthcare and a lack of a clear vision on national budget issues are keeping small business owners from investing in their communities, Cravaack said in a recent meeting with the ECM Publishers, Inc. Editorial Board.
“Small business is the Eighth District,” Cravaack said.
Nationally, seven of 10 people are employed by small business. Cravaack says that figure is even higher in the Eighth District.
“Small business owners, when you talk to them, don’t know what’s going to hit them next,” he said.
The Affordable Care Act, passed by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama in March 2010 has $800 billion in new taxes associated with it, and Obama’s budget proposal includes $1.9 trillion in new taxes, Cravaack said.
The uncertainty associated with these items is having an effect on business owners on Main Streets throughout the 8th District.
“We’re talking a lot of taxes and they don’t know how its going to hit them,” Cravaack said. “They are not investing in themselves.”
That’s because those owners don’t know what tomorrow brings as they, themselves struggle to make ends meet, the congressman said.
“They’re saying ‘We’re frozen and we’re not doing anything until we figure out what’s going to happen to us.”
As the President comes out and says he’s going to tax the rich, it’s the small business owner who is taking the hit. The guy making $250,000 a year, Cravaack said.
That’s the guy who owns the gas station in town, the hardware store, the landscaping firm,” Cravaack said. “Those are the guys we’re going to be taxing.”
For the full story, see the Thursday, March 15 print edition of the Times.