I’m a small business owner here in Milwaukee serving a diverse mix of people and over the years I have experienced a steady increase in taxes, regulations and hidden taxes in the form of fees (waste disposal, recycling, sewer, water, street maintenance, permits, electric and gas) . Unlike fortune 500 companies who can absorb a good share of these taxes, I have to pass the bulk of them on to my customers who are the ones least able to pay. Unfortunately you can only pass so much on to your customers before they start going elsewhere or stay home altogether. Since I am a sole proprietor whose business income is in the $250,000 and above range I’m obligated to state that “income” on my personal tax return which puts me in the untenable position of seeing my incomes taxes go up beyond what it makes sense to stay in business. Never mind that it is gross income before expenses or the cost of doing business and that in order to stay afloat I have had to cut staff, work more and at times forgo my salary.
I am not alone and the bulk of job creation comes from small business owners like me. We have been desperately looking at every way to cut costs which has translated in doing more with fewer people and in many instances going out of business. Unfortunately when we don’t hire, cut staff or even worse go out of business the people that suffer most are people of color. Yes you, your family, your neighbors and your friends are the big losers in this exercise to punish the “wealthy”.
Congress has shamefully recessed before voting on the extension of the Bush tax cuts which is extending economic uncertainty and will undoubtedly result in higher unemployment, foreclosure and business failure. This year if your candidate, Democrat or Republican is not pushing for the extension of these tax cuts for all Americans they should be sent home packing!
John Stossel has an excellent article on the subject: