What Stops Legislature From Helping Small Businesses Rather Than Just Talking About It?

We hope some members of the state Senate didn’t hurt themselves patting themselves on the back last week while talking about how they need to do more to help small business.

We ran reiterate all of the small business statistics and rankings. There’s the Forbes rankings that showed New York ranking the worst for small business due to the state’s high cost of living, high unemployment rate and a 79% small business survival rate. Or there’s the annual Tax Foundation rankings of small business climate that placed New York 49th in the country. Even the Motley Fool rankings place New York right in the middle at 25th in the country, with its total score dragged down for tax climate.

Our question to them, in particular Senate Democrats who can by and large do whatever they choose, is this — what’s stopping you from doing more to help small businesses?

Is it spending some almost half of a 90-minute day in session passing worthless resolutions, as happened last week when the Senate spent 40 minutes pontificating over resolutions that do little but fill senators with warm fuzzy feelings in their bellies? Is it an inability to get on the same page with fellow Democrats who control the state Assembly and governor’s office?

We can’t answer those questions. We do know, however, that years of beautiful speeches in Albany have resulted in a state that continually makes it more and more difficult to run a small business. They’ve said the right things. If only they had done the right things.

What are some of those right things, you may ask? Continued minimum wage increases are hurting small businesses when combined with other policy actions taken over the past few years. Democrat-led bills to phase out plastic containers used by restaurants is hurting restaurants, many of which are the very definition of a small, family owned business. The state has placed its pandemic-fueled unemployment insurance cost increases firmly on the back of its business community rather than using state tax dollars to pay back billions of dollars owed to the federal government. Increasing energy costs fueled by the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act are hurting businesses just as much as they hurt everyone else right now.

Those are a but a few of the decisions New York has made. More will come by next May’s Small Business Month. The beautiful speeches will change, but New York’s unfriendliness to small business will not.


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