This post was first published 10 years ago, in the midst of the Great Recession. I continue to think about the real challenges of running a small business and the balance needed between simplicity for the business owner and protections for the public. More below.
Senator McCain this morning on Meet the Press reprised the Republican view of the approach to stimulus: tax cuts for small businesses.
I thought about the small businesses I had seen in the past couple of weeks. Not one of them was paying income taxes, and their expenditure on payroll taxes was small, because they’d cut back on employees.
For the very small business, I don’t see taxes as the culprit.
Everywhere you look you see the impact of credit cards on the economy. Often it’s suit by American Express that brings a small business owner to my office.
Or the businessman makes a list of their credit card debt and the interest rates after the recent round of increases and realize that they can never pay off the debt at 28% interest.
Credit card merchant fees are a much bigger piece of the small business expense picture than are taxes for most of my clients. Each merchant pays a percentage of each credit transaction to the card issuer. 7-Eleven store owners are petitioning Congress for regulation of the fees charged merchants by the card issuers .
I’m certainly not an economist and don’t have a Moran Plan for reinvigorating the economy, but the people I see in trouble aren’t there because of their tax burden.
Small business wish list
Ten years later, my wish list for entrepreneurs is greater simplicity on the administrative side of the business.
Perhaps fewer jurisdictions to deal with and regulations that the average Joe can understand and follow. Less need for hired professionals to keep the business out of trouble.
Looking around in 2019, the regulatory changes we’re seeing don’t seem to be helping Mom and Pop businesses.