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Nightly Closure of Three Northbound Exit Lanes at San Ysidro Port Begins Sept 12

GSA news releases - Tue, 09/05/2017 - 12:12pm
Traffic Advisory for Phase 2 construction at SYLPOE.

Seventh Circuit Judge Posner Rides into the Summer Sunset

WLF Legal Pulse - Tue, 09/05/2017 - 10:00am
We begin Fall 2017 blogging with an appreciative farewell. This past Friday, September 1, US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit Judge Richard Posner announced his retirement, effective immediately. He served on the circuit for 36 years, having been appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1981. Judge Posner was a principled skeptic of lawyer-driven […]
Categories: Latest News

California Supreme Court Expands Scope of Discovery in Representative Actions under Private Attorneys General Act

WLF Legal Pulse - Tue, 09/05/2017 - 9:20am
Guest Commentary By John F. Querio, a Partner, and Lacey L. Estudillo, an Appellate Fellow, with Horvitz & Levy LLP. On July 13, 2017, the California Supreme Court decided Williams v. Superior Court, which expanded a plaintiff’s discovery rights in actions brought pursuant to California’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA).  PAGA permits an employee to […]
Categories: Latest News

Forbes: How Congress Can Help Reluctant Millennial Entrepreneurs And Small Businesses

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 09/05/2017 - 12:00am

Entrepreneurship is on the decline. This may come as a surprise with the popularity of shows such as “Shark Tank.” But between 2010 and 2014, only about 165,000 new businesses were started, compared with almost half a million new businesses between 1992 and 1996. Perhaps more surprisingly, millennials are starting even fewer businesses than previous generations.

Why are innovators – particularly Millennials – reluctant to start their own company? The recent recession coupled with barriers such as regulations, taxes, and lack of access to capital needed to start and grow a company, is adding to their reservations.

As chairman of the House Small Business Committee, I’ve seen first-hand how entrepreneurs and small businesses create a majority of our nation’s jobs. In fact, 99.9% of all businesses in the United States are considered a small business, and two out of every three new jobs are created by a small business. With these kinds of facts, you probably know someone who owns, works for, or works with a small business.

 

That’s why we need to make sure that people with great ideas feel like they can take that idea and successfully turn it into a product, service, or job.

In response, the House Small Business Committee recently held a hearing to ask industry experts what we can do to reverse the decline. We brought in Gregory Crawford, Ph.D., the president of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council, to get their input on the current state of entrepreneurship.

Dr. Crawford is focused on using universities as testing grounds for the next generation of innovators. He believes in not only traditional education, but also real-world experience and entrepreneurial lessons, to prepare more students to create new businesses, and thus create new jobs through their entrepreneurial accomplishments.

 

According to Dr. Crawford, Miami University has transformed their traditional internships into “interactive apprenticeships” where students can jump into the middle of a “messy, complex, sometimes risky, tension filled” real-world experience of entrepreneurship. Kerrigan noted that half of Millennials would be interested in starting a new business. However, she stressed the fact that millennials are more risk averse than other generations, leading to a 24 year low in businesses created by young Americans. She also said we need to create a more “business-friendly” environment, particularly by reducing duplicative or outdated regulations that prevent companies from growing.

I couldn’t agree more.

Across the country, federal government regulations affect small businesses in all industries, making it harder and more costly for small companies to start, grow and expand their businesses. Entrepreneurs are struggling with high compliance costs and expensive mandates. We need to lighten the massive regulatory burden, and make it easier for small businesses to thrive.

The Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of Advocacy is currently holding round tables around the country to hear directly from small businesses about which regulations are hurting them the most. By updating, cleaning up, or getting rid of bad regulations entirely, entrepreneurs will be better able to do what they do best – create jobs.

While there are many reasons potential entrepreneurs are apprehensive, perhaps the biggest barrier to taking the leap is the broken tax code. According to a June CNBC survey, taxes were the number one issue for at least a quarter of small businesses surveyed.

First, the current system is confusing for many small business owners. Many came from different careers, but with one great idea decided to start their own business. They do not have accounting backgrounds to help them navigate our complicated tax system. Nor are many of them able to hire tax attorneys to help them figure out how to save money.

Second, when small businesses have to pay higher taxes, it prevents them from investing money back into their company. Money they could use on new equipment to make their latest cupcake, invest in a marketing campaign about their new phone app, or even hire more employees to manage a new store.

Third, the smaller the business, the higher their tax burden per employee. Businesses with more than 50 employees have a tax burden of less than $200 per employee, while businesses with five or fewer employees face burdens as high as $4,500 per employee. This is not fair. We need to ensure that our tax system doesn’t favor the size of a business or their ability to turn a profit the quickest.

With slow economic growth and declining entrepreneurship, especially among millennials, it is more important than ever to provide legislative solutions to help, not hurt new and small businesses. From reducing regulations, increasing access to capital, and reforming the outdated tax system, I am committed to helping create an environment that encourages younger generations to get excited about starting a business. Millennials have the talent, creativity, and work ethic to create the next generation of businesses and jobs, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on Capitol Hill to make that a reality.

The original article can be read HERE.

Chairman Chabot Applauds Swift Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Aid Bill

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 09/05/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON - Today, Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) of the House Small Business Committee released the following statement on the Hurricane Harvey Emergency Funding legislation to designate $450 million to the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Disaster Loan Program.

"As Chairman of the House Small Business Committee, I applaud House Leadership, Chairman Frelinghuysen, and the House Appropriations Committee on their swift action to craft a bill to provide disaster relief aid to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. The people of Texas and Louisiana are strong, but their small businesses will need our help to rebuild.”

“I trust that the SBA and Administrator McMahon will be good stewards of the funds and ensure small businesses and homeowners get back on their feet as quickly as possible.”

Peck Says GSA Recovery Act Funded Projects Create Jobs and Green Cities

GSA speeches - Sun, 09/03/2017 - 5:05am
Speech 7/8/2010 Peck Says GSA Recovery Act Funded Projects Create Jobs and Green Cities

GSA Releases Fiscal Year 2018 Per Diem Rates for Federal Travelers

GSA news releases - Fri, 09/01/2017 - 12:12pm
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- GSA released the fiscal year (FY) 2018 travel per diem rates today, which will take effect on October 1, 2017. GSA sets these rates based on local market costs of mid-priced hotels annually.

Food Court Follies: Judge Grates Parmesan-Cheese Multidistrict Litigation

WLF Legal Pulse - Thu, 08/31/2017 - 5:43pm
Thanks to America’s regrettably litigious nature, the “Reasonable Person” is always busy. This prototypically average, ordinary human being is routinely called upon in legal disputes governed by common-law tort principles and asked: What would you think or do in this situation? One strain of litigation—consumer-fraud class actions—has kept the Reasonable Person especially occupied in recent […]
Categories: Latest News

GSA announces new lease agreement for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in Camp Springs, MD

GSA news releases - Thu, 08/31/2017 - 12:12pm
New lease will consolidate USCIS headquarters, save $21.4 million in first year and reduce footprint

Chairman Chabot Sends Letter to SBA Monitoring Hurricane Relief Efforts

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 08/31/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) sent a letter to Small Business Administration Administrator Linda McMahon recognizing the SBA’s early efforts to respond quickly to Hurricane Harvey and encouraging SBA to continue to respond efficiently and effectively to the victims in Texas and Louisiana.

As you are aware, the Committee reviewed SBA’s Disaster Loan Program at its April 26, 2017 hearing.  The program necessarily improved following Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy.  In the wake of those disasters, the oversight community—including Congress, the Government Accountability Office, and the SBA Office of Inspector General—made several recommendations and took legislative action to help SBA improve its disaster loan program.  SBA has largely implemented these recommendations and legislative provisions.  At the hearing, however, the Committee emphasized that SBA must continue improving its loan process times while also guarding against fraud and abuse in the program.  Although a difficult task, SBA reassured the Committee at the hearing it was capable and ready for that next big disaster,” said Chairman Chabot.

“As I emphasized in April’s hearing, the Committee wants to help SBA to make sure it is prepared.  I look forward to continuing to work with you to ensure that SBA has the tools necessary to aid the Hurricane Harvey victims from homeowners to small business owners,” he said.

The full letter can be read HERE



Committee Announces Hearing Addressing the Risk of Waste, Fraud and Abuse in the Federal Communications Commission’s Lifeline Program

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, will convene a hearing titled, “Addressing the Risk of Waste, Fraud and Abuse in the Federal Communications Commission’s Lifeline Program,” at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, September 6, 2017. The Lifeline program, which subsidizes telephone and broadband service for low-income consumers, was the subject of a recent study by the independent Government Accountability Office (GAO). In its report, GAO describes recurring failures of evaluation and oversight creating persistent risk of waste, fraud, and abuse and threatening the ability of Lifeline to serve its intended purpose.

Witnesses:

-  Mr. Seto Bagdoyan, Director, Audit Services, Forensic Audits & Investigative Service, Government Accountability Office
-  Commissioner Chris Nelson, Commissioner, South Dakota Public Utilities Commission
-  Ms. Deborah Collier, Director of Technology and Telecommunications Policy, Citizens Against Government Waste
-  Dr. Jeffrey Eisenach, Visiting Scholar, American Enterprise Institute; Adjunct Professor, George Mason University School of Law

*Witness list subject to change 

Hearing Details:

Wednesday, September 6, 2017
10:00 a.m.
Full committee

This hearing will take place in Russell Senate Office Building, Room 253. Witness testimony, opening statements, and a live video of the hearing will be available on www.commerce.senate.gov.

Florida Supreme Court, Casting Separation of Powers Aside, Invalidates Medical Malpractice Damages Limits

WLF Legal Pulse - Tue, 08/29/2017 - 4:12pm
Guest Commentary By Andrew S. Bolin, Beytin, McLaughlin, McLaughlin, O’Hara, Bocchino & Bolin, P.A. In 2003, the Florida Legislature undertook the arduous task of examining the impact of medical malpractice lawsuits in the State of Florida. Governor Jeb Bush appointed a Select Task Force on Healthcare Professional Liability Insurance that consisted of a distinguished group […]
Categories: Latest News

ICYMI – Small Business Need Real Regulatory Change, Not “Meaningless Relief Efforts”

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 08/29/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Last week, Karen Kerrigan, President and CEO of the Small Business and Entrepreneurship (SBE) Council, acknowledged the Administration’s efforts to ease the regulatory burden on small businesses in an SBE Council article. These efforts coincide with the House Small Business Committee’s efforts over the past several years that have helped provide certainty and encouraged entrepreneurship.  Ms. Kerrigan, however, explained that small businesses are still waiting for long-lasting regulatory relief, especially through the passage of S. 584, the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act.  A similar bill was authored by House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) and passed the House on January 11, 2017.

What About Small Business Regulatory Reform?

By Karen Kerrigan

“From the first full day President Trump took office until now, the Administration has focused on removing regulatory impediments and overreach that are hurting our economy and its small businesses.  A series of executive orders, Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolutions signed by the President (14 in total), as well as specific actions by the agencies to roll back or review some of the more onerous rulemakings under the Obama Administration have made a significant difference in bringing certainty and lower costs for many businesses,” said Kerrigan.

The article goes on to explain that the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act “updates the Regulatory Flexibility Act and closes loopholes used by rule writers to avoid complying with steps that protect small businesses from rash or one-size-fits-all regulations. It would make federal agencies account for a full and complete economic impact of their proposed regulations (direct and indirect costs); include IRS rulemakings for analysis; require full transparency as to why a rule was drafted, how it was drafted, and the real impact on small businesses; review old rules currently on the books; and waive certain fines for first-time paperwork violations.”

“This is a critical bill for Main Street, as large companies have their K Street outposts to comb through the Federal Register on a daily basis and intervene with regulators on their behalf.  S.584 embeds common sense steps in proposed federal rulemakings, which systematically protect startups and small firms from overreaching regulatory efforts.”

To read the full SBE Council article, click HERE.

Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Announce Public Meetings to Discuss the Definition of “Waters of the United States”

Office of Advocacy - Mon, 08/28/2017 - 4:43pm

On August 28, 2017, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a schedule of public meetings to discuss the Definition of “Waters of the United States”, including teleconferences tailored to specific sectors. EPA and the Corps will be conducting specific small entity outreach via a teleconference on Tuesday, September 19, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. (Eastern). Interested parties should RSVP to Joan B.

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Ambiguity Eclipses Clarity in Two Post-“Spokeo” Standing-to-Sue Decisions

WLF Legal Pulse - Mon, 08/28/2017 - 9:05am
In addition to an America-only total solar eclipse, August brought us a remarkable flurry of significant federal appeals court decisions. Among those decisions were two that addressed a hotly contested procedural issue: plaintiff’s standing to sue for violation of a federal statute. The rulings, both of which interpreted and applied the 2016 US Supreme Court […]
Categories: Latest News

Advocacy to Host Regulatory Roundtable in St. Louis, Missouri

Office of Advocacy - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 3:39pm

Advocacy to Host Regulatory Roundtable in St. Louis, Missouri

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday September 12th, the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration will host a roundtable in St. Louis, Missouri at the Marriott St. Louis Grand – 800 Washington Avenue. The event will be from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Central Time.  

 

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Advocacy Invites Small Businesses to Attend Ohio Roundtables

Office of Advocacy - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 3:36pm

Advocacy Invites Small Businesses to Attend Ohio Roundtables

 

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Les Davies Appointed Small Business Advocate for Region 5

Office of Advocacy - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 3:33pm

 Les Davies Appointed Small Business Advocate for Region 5

 

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Advocacy to Host Regulatory Roundtable in Lexington, Kentucky

Office of Advocacy - Fri, 08/25/2017 - 3:30pm

Advocacy to Host Regulatory Roundtable in Lexington, Kentucky  

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Monday July 31st, the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration will host a roundtable in Lexington, Kentucky with U.S. House Representative Andy Barr in attendance. The event will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the Embassy Suites.

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

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