Advocacy

In Support of Small Business

You have a business to run, so the team at SBAM constantly monitors issues affecting small business so you don’t have to.  SBAM also helps to give you and other small business owners a voice in the democratic process by connecting members with influential policymakers.

You can help protect your small business and help bolster Michigan’s entrepreneurs by getting involved today.

SBAM has an easy way for you to contact your elected officials. Take action now and voice your support for small business by:

  • Contacting your legislators
  • Examining voting records   
  • Locating your elected officials
  • Tracking key issues
  • Learning about elections

Policy Agenda

SBAM recently released its Small Business Policy Agenda. Download your copy here.

 

Latest Legislative News

New Score Card shows big improvement in Michigan’s entrepreneurial climate

The Small Business Foundation of Michigan’s eighth annual Entrepreneurship Score Card finds that Michigan has dramatically improved in the measure called Entrepreneurial Climate, rising to 15th in the nation in 2011 compared to 45th in 2010. “We are especially pleased to see this improvement in Entrepreneurial Climate, because it’s a key measure of Michigan’s gains in the general business, capital access and technology/innovation qualities of our economy,” says Rob Fowler, president and CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan. “This is a strong indicator of healthier conditions for future small business and entrepreneurial activity.”

Other Score Card measurements show little dramatic change but rather a slow continuation of positive economic trends. Notably, Michigan’s five-year business survival rate, which had been underperforming since 2003, is now at the U.S. average.

The Score Card finds that Michigan’s economic assets remain postsecondary education and a highly skilled workforce. Science, engineering and graduate program output remains healthy and technology competitiveness is an asset, giving the state above average performance in the Research & Innovation metric. On the downside, Michigan remains challenged by such trends as the cost of doing business and regulatory/legal measures (although there are select tax, fiscal and regulatory policies and outcomes upon which the state is now scoring higher.) Fortunately, these negatives are all areas where public policies are currently being focused (for example, business tax reform took effect on Jan. 1, 2012.) 

“These public policy efforts are vitally needed to help overcome low performing trends like the fundamentals of K-12, infrastructure and quality of life,” says Fowler. “Michigan needs to continue its efforts to further accelerate entrepreneurial growth if we are to reach our goal of being counted among the top five friendliest states in the nation for small business and entrepreneurship.

The Score Card is available for download at www.sbam.org. Printed copies may be requested by calling (800) 362-5461.

The Entrepreneurship Score Card is a project of the Small Business Foundation of Michigan in partnership with the Small Business Association of Michigan, Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione, Consumers Energy, Dow Corning Corporation, DTE Foundation, Michigan Municipal League, Michigan State Housing Development Authority, Crain’s Detroit Business and the Edward Lowe Foundation.

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/annt189/

What do you think of the Score Card results? Leave a comment below!

How Michigan is tilling the ground to foster the growth of "economic gardening." Wednesday at 10 a.m. on Business Next.

Learn about the terrific new economic gardening programs being offered by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Interview with the MEDC's Tom Rico. Also, David Lingholm of Answer Santiago has words of wisdom to help guide you through the world of small business social media. And, an overview of the new University of Michigan’s Master of Entrepreneurship program. Interview with Aileen Huang-Saad & Bill Lovejoy, program co-directors.

Listen Wednesday at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page

Get Business Next audio seminars delivered three times a week automatically to your iPhone or other mobile device. Subscribe in iTunes using this URL

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnbalcombe/

Trying to control costly small business insurance mandates, today on Business Next

Michael Rogers talks with Dave Jessup, SBAM's Director of Government Relations, about efforts to control costly small business insurance mandates. Plus, details on two outstanding upcoming events: the March 7 Google Get Your Business Online and the March 20 Economic Gardening panel. Listen today at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page

Get Business Next audio seminars delivered three times a week automatically to your iPhone or other mobile device. Subscribe in iTunes using this URL.

Tell us what you think about small business insurance mandates. Leave a comment below!

Cutting the regulatory paperwork that burdens small business owners. Today at 10 a.m. on the Business Next audio seminar!

Dave Jessup, director of government relations, reports on latest developments at the Capitol. Plus, spreading broadband Internet, and entrepreneurial success stories: "Tag Marketing", Inner City Skateboards, business track leadership for high school students. Listen today at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page

Get Business Next audio seminars delivered three times a week automatically to your iPhone or other mobile device. Subscribe in iTunes using this URL

Resolutions Would Block Union Elections Rule

From SBAM's national affiliate, NSBA:

On Feb. 16, Reps. John Kline (R-Minn.), Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.) and Phil Roe (R-Tenn.), along with 65 cosponsors, introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives a resolution (H.J. Res. 103) to disapprove under the Congressional Review Act the union elections rule submitted by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) late last year. A similar resolution (S.J. Res. 36) was introduced in the U.S. Senate by Sens. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.)which has 44 cosponsors.

Often referred to as the "ambush elections" rule, NSBA took a firm stance last year against the rule, filing comments which detailed the unfair process and significant burden it would pose for small businesses.

NSBA has submitted a letter in support of both resolutions which, if passed, would prevent the regulation from going into effect. Of primary concern with the ambush elections rule is the fact that unions can spend months or even years in advance of filing a petition to encourage employee support of unionization. The unions control when a petition is filed, giving them the upper-hand in planning and spreading information to the workforce. Employers, under this proposed rule, would then bear the full brunt of a shortened timeframe which, in certain circumstances, could be just 10 days following the filing of a petition. 

The current median time between a petition being filed and the elections is only 38 days. Moreover, unions prevailed in 71 percent of elections in FY 2011. It is unclear, therefore, that there even exists any major flaw in the process or major delays--as NLRB has claimed--that have prompted this proposal. 

The primary objective of the National Labor Relations Act is to “assure employees the fullest freedom to decide whether or not they desire union representation.” Employees ought to have unfettered access to information from both sides on the implications of a unionizing campaign before a vote would happen. This rule impedes that objective. 

The rule would dramatically limit the scope of the pre-hearing process. Previously, both the NLRB and courts have come to the conclusion that, as the law spells out, a pre-election hearing is necessary to ensure fairness to employers and to protect the rights of employees to make informed choices in the elections. 

How small business worked with the DEQ on environmental regulatory reform. Today at 10 a.m. on the Business Next free audio seminar

SBAM's Director of Government Relations Dave Jessup talks with Michael Rogers about the successful effort to begin reforming Michigan's environmetal regulations. Also, get advice on how to network more effectively, learn how a small office supply company thrives in southeast Michigan, and hear about the new Michipreneuers website. Listen today at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page.

Get Business Next audio seminars delivered three times a week automatically to your iPhone or other mobile device. Subscribe in iTunes using this URL.

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/your_wht_knight/

Small business owners support recommendations to cut environmental red tape

The Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) supports the Michigan Office of Regulatory Reinvention (ORR) recommendations released today that update environmental regulations in order to make Michigan a more competitive place to do business. 

“These recommendations are the result of a productive dialogue that has taken place between the Snyder administration and the state’s job providers,” says Rob Fowler, President and CEO of SBAM. “Historically there have been two major factors contributing to making it expensive to do business in Michigan: the system by which we tax businesses and an overly stringent regulatory structure. In 2011, Gov. Snyder took a huge first step on his promise to restructure business taxation. The administration’s comprehensive review of regulation stands to be the next major milestone in making Michigan once again a good place in which to do business.”

SBAM supports a more efficient, customer service-oriented licensing process that services private sector business needs, with a particular emphasis placed on cost containment and timetable efficiency; and predictability in regulatory applications to allow businesses to plan for future liabilities (particularly important for small businesses as they typically do not have the resources to navigate a complex regime of regulation.) “Many of the recommendations on environmental regulation that ORR has announced today are targeted toward these objectives and SBAM looks forward to the future release of reforms in other areas of state government,” says Fowler. “SBAM applauds the ORR efforts and is eager to partner with the administration and legislative leaders to make the necessary statutory changes recommended in the package.”

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/rumn8tr/

What are the options for repairing Michigan's crumbling roads and bridges? And why should small business owners care? Today on the Business Next free audio seminar

Kirk Steudle, director of the Michigan Department of Transportation, talks about the importance of an excellent transportation infrastructure to small business success. Listen today at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. today on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/dougtone/

How do you think we should pay to repair our roads and bridges? Leave a comment below.
RSS
First38394041424344454647