Five Legislative Principles Help Ensure Small Businesses Have Necessary Resources for Recovery

(INDIANAPOLIS) – As small businesses continue efforts to re-open and Congress and the Administration prepare the next phase of legislation, The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization, issued a plan, “NFIB Legislative Principles for Phase Four Small Business Relief,” today. The Phase Four plan lays out five legislative principles to help ensure that America’s small businesses continue to have the resources they need to move forward during this recovery.

“Small business owners are thankful to Congress for passing the PPP and getting much needed financial aid into the hands of small business owners,” said Barbara Quandt, NFIB State Director in Indiana. “The PPP has been extremely helpful, but it’s not enough. NFIB’s phase 4 plan is crucial to getting small businesses back on their feet. After much feedback from our members, these five recommendations are what small business owners across Indiana say they need to get back to what they do best: contributing to Indiana’s economy and creating jobs for Hoosiers.”

In Indianapolis, Mike Seidle says the PPP allowed him to keep all six of his employees. Seidle co-owns WorkHere, a software scale up company that specializes in recruitment. His small business created the first chat-powered, hyperlocal candidate delivery platform. One of his biggest clients are hair salon franchises, which he helps find employees using a job board and chat feature with a WorkHere agent to weed out and find the best candidates. However, when pandemic hit in March, nearly all his business dried up. Hair salons were shut down across the country and they didn’t need WorkHire to help them find new employees anymore. Just like every other business, we didn’t have a contingency plan for the pandemic.

work here small.jpg

Seidle, far right, and his team at WorkHere.

“Had we not gotten the PPP we would have been a bug on the windshield. It has kept us alive from May until now. Even though our business slowed down we were able to keep our employees working and they made use of the time to recruit and diversify our business.”

Seidle’s PPP will run out in about another month, however. While his business is picking back up, he says another round of PPP would help him through these uncertain times.

“What happens if we have another lock down? The demand for my services would all but go away again. If we have any more shutdowns we could go back to where we were in March. I do business not only here in Indiana, but across the country and I work with companies who don’t have millions in the bank. I am cautiously optimistic that we will get through the summer, but it worries me that some states are starting to close down again. As Congress works through more legislation to deal with the COVID-19 crisis, they need to keep in mind the country’s small business owners – some of the hardest hit from this pandemic.”

NFIB previously issued a 10-point plan in April as small businesses across the country faced unprecedented shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of the elements included in that plan were incorporated into subsequent legislation.

The Phase Four plan NFIB issued today includes recommendations that will help our country’s smallest businesses, including expanding financial assistance, creating strong liability protections, reforming unemployment insurance, and streamlining relief:

  1. Financial Assistance: Target near-term and longer-term financial assistance programs for the smaller businesses with continuing financial needs.
  2. Liability Protections: Create strong liability protections that enable small businesses to reopen safely and smartly without the fear of devastating lawsuits.
  3. Tax Relief: Provide tax relief for small businesses so they can recover faster, keep and hire employees, and bolster their communities.
  4. Unemployment Insurance Reform: Reform unemployment insurance so small businesses can quickly fill open positions and get the economy growing again.
  5. Regulatory Relief: Streamline PPP forgiveness and protect small businesses from additional regulatory requirements or expanding existing mandates.

The plan can be found here.

NFIB continues to survey members throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery. The latest findings can be found here.