Welcome to National Small Business Week! Small business has been called the backbone of the American economy for good reason. Small businesses create more than 2/3 of the net new jobs and employ more than half of the country’s workforce.
Unfortunately, the environment for small business and entrepreneurial growth was filled with uncertainty. That resulted in an anomaly that saw more businesses closing than opening. Many small business owners felt the pinch of increased regulations at the federal and state levels along with the substantial costs of Obamacare. Without a clear path to a return on investment, small businesses took less risk and hired fewer workers.
In recent months, small business optimism increased dramatically which may lead to increased hiring. The NFIB Small Business Optimism Survey has reached heights not seen since 2005. Sixteen percent of small business owners have plans to increase employment while 30% currently have job openings. More than 20% of small businesses believe that it is a good time to expand.
In Illinois, it’s time for state government to get out of the way of small business. Instead, several bills have recently passed the Illinois House that are hostile to small businesses. Other bills claim to help small business, but just carry appealing titles with empty reform. For Illinois to benefit from an improved economy that creates new jobs, small business needs to know that state government isn’t going to pull the rug out from underneath them.