Robert Hurt: Small businesses are the key to more jobs

Robert_HurtLast week, I traveled the Fifth District visiting small businesses throughout Central and Southside Virginia in recognition of National Small Business Week.  From a Danville Tractor Supply Company to a garden center in Arrington to a construction company in Charlottesville, we were able to witness the ingenuity of Virginia’s Fifth District firsthand as we talked to hard-working employees and met with the entrepreneurs behind these main street businesses that are the backbone of our communities.

May 12th – 16th marked the 51st annual National Small Business Week to recognize the contributions of small businesses to our communities and our economy.  Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, comprising 97 percent of all employers in America and accounting for 60 to 80 percent of all new jobs created.  That is why a successful recovery and a robust economy require a thriving small business sector where entrepreneurs are encouraged to succeed.

Yet, excessive government regulation continues to disproportionately impact small businesses and impede their growth and development at a time when we need their success the most.  As I met with these small businesses last week, the sentiment was consistent that the federal government is stifling their ability to grow and create jobs.

The National Small Business Association reported in February that 91 percent of small companies reported increases in their health premiums with their most recent insurance renewal.   Further, the Obama administration is on its way to generating the most government regulations in American history, issuing 157 new major rules which cost American taxpayers an annual $73 billion.

In addition to the unnecessary costs and regulations the President’s health care law is imposing upon our small businesses, this administration’s energy policies are also making life harder for them with skyrocketing utility bills.  As a result, they must cut employee hours and slash jobs we cannot afford to lose.

That is why my colleagues in the House and I have been laser-focused on promoting policies that will foster growth for small businesses and benefit their current and future employees.  From cutting unnecessary regulations to establishing an all-of-the-above American energy policy, the House has passed over one hundred bills that would provide our small businesses with the environment to grow and create jobs for our communities.

We must free our main street businesses from these government-created obstacles to economic growth.  With the unemployment rate in many Central and Southside Virginia localities exceeding the national rate, it is unacceptable that unnecessary government regulations are holding our job creators back.

I look forward to continuing to promote pro-growth policies that put trust in the hands of our main street businesses, and not the federal government.  As I saw last week in our district, small businesses truly are the drivers of our economy and we must do all we can to foster their success.

If you need any additional information, please visit my website at hurt.house.gov or call my Washington office: (202) 225-4711, Charlottesville office: (434) 973-9631, Danville office: (434) 791-2596, or Farmville office: (434) 395-0120.

Robert Hurt represents the Fifth District in Congress.

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