Small business may be defined as:
- Usually more than a couple of employees
- Between 500K and 100 Million in sales
- Not involved with politics or lobbying activity
- Affected by regulation, over taxation, and unreasonable legal liability
Large businesses advocate and lobby for advantageous legislation or favorable taxation. Most have the resources and promote more specialized interests for their business, as it should be. Small business does not have the time, money, or sophistication to be effectively involved in government monitoring much less a voice in its restraint. CFA intends to provide that missing link for small business in Arkansas.
- City Ordinances:
- County Regulation:
- State Regulation: We believe that the state should do much more in the intermediary role between the businesses in the state and the federal government. Each state should operate the employment, labor, safety programs that the federal government mandates.
- Federal Regulation: Although a contributor, cheap labor somewhere else is not the primary driver of moving manufacturing and other business out of this country. The environment of multiple, oppressive, and unreasonable regulatory agencies that create not only an unnecessary bureaucracy in a business to deal with the mostly distractive purposes, but the punitive nature and attitude of these agencies often proves to be the breaking point in the will of businesses to do what they do–expand and add jobs. This is not to say that all regulation and oversight is unnecessary but rather the method and punitive nature has gotten out of control. Rather than “inspecting” a company upon a single complaint (which likely as not comes from a disgruntled employee), an informal meeting and follow up process would be an adequate response. If there is a history of complaints or of blatant abuse, then and only then should punitive actions be taken. That is not the way it works in most regulatory agencies now. Often there is no reasonableness or common sense involved with regulators. Currently the process appears that they simply collect fines to subsidize their existence and seem accountable to no one.
- City Taxation and Fees: Building fees, requirements, and unnecessary operating or expansion expenses are a form of taxation.Cities traditionally reap more from a business than from a single family home activity primarily because they can.
- County Tax: Personal property tax: Inventories and equipment in a business are regularly paid for two times, once when you buy the items, then again over the subsequent 20 years to the county.
- State Taxes: Arkansas has one of the highest rates in the multi-state region at about 7%
- Federal Taxes: From Income tax to Unemployment taxes, the cost of taxation per employee is a large contributor to making “made in the USA” an increasingly rare statement. One need not wonder why if we consider the true cost of doing business in this environment.
Summary of CFA position regarding the most productive Employer/Employee relationship for the good of the Arkansas citizenry:
In General–Problems Defined:
- An individual’s relationship with an employer has become more distant and adversarial over the past decades.
- Entitlement mentality of the individual and the constraint of regulation has created an environment that causes the employer to adopt uniform processes and responses that do not, and cannot, make the individual actions of the employee the focus of growth and prosperity but rather lumps all into a group for an average relationship. This fosters mediocrity at all levels, including the individual.
- Discrimination, abuse, and disparity are too often the first things considered from all perspectives. These perceptions are further enhanced by the response of business taking the safe and generic path to relationships with employees and correspondingly, the employee is enabled, and even encouraged to assume a wrong has been committed if they are not successful or continued as a productive part of the business relationship.
- There are obvious differences in people that cannot be measured by any imposed system, and we should move to a relationship whereby the judgment of an employer/employee transaction is deemed reasonable if the people remain, in general, willingly employed. An employer will generally fail on their own within a free capitalist system if they consistently cause good people to be subjected to discrimination, danger, or abusive environments.
A–The two extreme general perception groups for the business to individual relationship are outlined as follows:
1.Business Focus Extreme:
- Business is big, rich, socially blind, and mindlessly focused for profits.
- The goal is to make as much money as possible for the owners.
- Employees are a necessary evil who must be paid a little as possible.
- Employees are used as interchangeable parts and are of minor importance as individuals.
- Safety is a cost to be minimized.
- Management will and does take advantage of an individual any time it can.
- Jobs are a take it or leave it proposition
2.Employee Focus Extreme:
- Jobs are an entitlement.
- What, where, when, and how employment should be regulated by a third party
- Employees are to be treated the same rather than equally (same pay for same job description.)
- To be fired is a negotiated transaction wherein the reason for the separation is an equal responsibility.
- Seniority plays a primary or large roll in job retention and compensation.
- Government should monitor in detail, and punish any potential safety or discrimination infractions.
- Burden should be on business to prove there is absolutely no abuse, discrimination, or danger encountered at all times.
B—An ideal and productive business environment, most beneficial to all sides, would consider the following as positive principals:
- It is in the interest of business to create an environment where individuals not only wish to work, but can advance to their potential in that work.
- It is the individual’s duty to advance when given opportunity, not the other way.
- A job filled is a mutually beneficial arrangement that should be terminate-able by either party at any time if not beneficial.
- Employees should be paid the higher of their general market rate or a value that will enhance the company viability and retain the employee services.
- Safety is good for business. Injury is not only a cost to both parties, but an indicator of the poor value/job of the management.
- Retaining employees is good for business. Retaining unproductive people is harmful for the company and all individuals within it. There are many factors that go into the decision to terminate an employee, it is unproductive to business and the ultimate benefits to the employee to be forced to consider the “larger group/description” an individual may be assigned/belong to when assessing an individual’s job value.
- Neither party is obligated to the other except by formal written contracts.
- Some people are just better at a specific job and “doing business” than others. Therefore: Some are worth more compensation than others; some will accept less than others. This is an individual agreement between an individual and a business not directly relevant to any other or different arrangement.
- Risk and reward should always be allowed to be an incentive when humans enter into financial relationships.
- The same description or opportunity does not insure the same results.
- Some are worth more compensation than others; some will accept less than others. This is an individual agreement between an individual and a business not directly relevant to any other or different arrangement.
- Pay should be agreed before the fact rather than some distant time an individual discovers that they are paid less than another.
- Pay is an individual negotiation before the fact.
- Continuing the relationship after the fact is an option for either party.
- Equal pay for equal work is impossible to achieve in both the sense of value created by each and the effect of intangible activity on the rest of the people for the individual.
- There are too many factors to equate one individual to another.
- This should allow each individual to negotiate their best deal with the employer regardless of what deal any other individual may have.
- Incentives exist for both parties to reach an acceptable private arrangement.
Therefore it is the intention of CFA to promote the return to and further establish true free market principles and move business in Arkansas toward the more general “public regulation by affirmative employee/consumer/community action” in place of the current “collective, government administration of penalty/requirement/and directed incentives.”
Commentary from a conservative position:
The Washington County Quorum Court (2012) passed to the voters an unsustainable and almost fully subsidized county transit tax. The justices should have never shirked their responsibility to protect the taxpaying citizens of this county from this kind of unreasonable tax. These elected officials are supposed to be the first line of defense for unreasonable tax schemes. It was their job to learn and know the details that the public could–in order to defeat this effort. Instead they mostly hid behind the “Let the People Decide” excuse. This is their job to decide these matters. We the people elect and hire them to find the facts and make the decisions, otherwise, let’s eliminate their positions from the government, save the expense, and the people can vote on everything. That is what a democracy really looks like.
This is a good example of why we have a constitutional Republic rather than a democracy.
The tax, which would have amounted to about 7.5 million dollars, would be forever until repealed. It would primarily fund a private company that would be on the taxpayer dime for decades to come. There is no argument that this or any other system cannot come close to paying for its operation let alone the capital costs. The benefits are to a very few riders and the private administrators and owners, at the expense of all of the rest of us.
Make no mistake about it, there will be more taxes and programs proposed in the future to provide what they call public transit such as light rail. This would take the subsidy and tax losses to many times greater levels than that misguided transit bus proposal. Don’t be fooled by the buzzwords used for mass transit. Mobility, environmentally sustainable, socially responsible, etc.. These are simply the immeasurable, unaccountable snake oil sales techniques used by big government, big transportation corporations, and subsidized private companies to move your money to their pockets. These programs never, I repeat never hold up to any scrutiny of financial responsibility. Public transportation in not a bad concept if rationally created and paid for in the majority by the actual users. As proposed in most every example, these programs, in fact, always grow government payrolls, lessen the taxpayer’s income, and shrink citizen’s freedom.
Commentary from a progressive position:
(Article on light rail from ArkDemoGaz coming soon….)
”Gridlock—Why we’re stuck in traffic and what to do about it.” by Randal O’Toole.
Whenever you hear the terms watershed, streamside, “xyz” authority, and many others you should carefully and thoughtfully ask yourself—“what new controls over my life, liberty and property will these actions give the government?” (And recall, when someone or something is given power or control, they have taken that power or control from another.)
Case in point–The City of Fayetteville, Arkansas recently passed a “Streamside Ordinance.”
It is the position of CFA that such an ordinance effectively takes the control, power, and use (benefits of ownership) of any private land that is within 50 feet of whatever water run-off, stream, ditch, or pond the government deems that could ever drain into a public lake or river. This is giving the City Government the power and authority to solely decide what your land can be used for and how—without paying you a penny for the loss of its use by you.
The mission of CFA is to educate the public and property owners concerning such government actions and the costs to freedoms that these actions impart. CFA believes that without an educated public, this pattern will continue and exculpate, such as in this case—Washington County is expected to follow the lead of the City of Fayetteville and try to implement much more control over all water related land use in the very near future. Imagine that the county may deem a part time ditch or full time pond on your property is now in their control because the runoff from a rain could affect Beaver Lake. CFA is not saying that willful polluting should not be dealt with by the county or other government agency, but taking private land rights by assuming the landowner cannot control it properly and that the landowner will otherwise pollute, as defined by government, at some point in the future– is abuse of power and insulting.
Behind all of this remember:
Knowledge is Power!