Overregulation Hurts Orlando Small Businesses

By Jamie Saloom, Assistant Chief Counsel

On June 6, 2018 Advocacy convened a regulatory reform roundtable just outside of Orlando, Florida. Small businesses told us that one-size-fits -all policies benefit big business at their expense. The kinds of policies described at our roundtable result in higher prices and lower quality for American consumers; and Advocacy is fighting for a level regulatory playing field for small businesses.

A few examples of regulations that are squeezing small business include: Food and Drug Administration “deeming rules”, including cigar box labeling regulations that Big Tobacco has no problem complying with, but will put small family-owned handmade cigar manufacturers out of businesses, flaws in the federal procurement system that impose fatal delays for small businesses hoping to compete for federal dollars, and Department of Agriculture rules that prevent small farmers from engaging in eco-tourism to help keep their farms afloat.

Several roundtable participants also raised concerns about the impact NAFTA has had on Florida agriculture, citing the difficulty local farmers have in proving that importers are illegally dumping products into the market to suppress prices. Such practices are prohibited if they have an impact on the national market, but not seasonal or local markets.

Finally, a number of roundtable participants cited the high costs of health care as their number one concern. We heard that small business owners would like to be able to participate in association health care plans, which would require changes in federal laws about interstate insurance markets.

Small businesses provide competitive, affordable choices to American consumers, and are the job creators in today’s economy. Orlando area businesses, like the other businesses we hear from around the country, want a predictable and fair regulatory landscape that allows small businesses to do what they do best. They also need to be able to buy affordable healthcare for themselves, their families and their employees.

Jamie Saloom is the Assistant Chief Counsel for Intellectual Property and Telecommunications. She can be reached at Jamie.Saloom@sba.gov.

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