Letter: State policies make it difficult for small businesses to thrive

Illinois workers and businesses have already struggled more than our counterparts in other states during the COVID-19 pandemic. More recently, the Delta variant is stalling what we had hoped would be the return to normal we all needed. As a small business owner, I am as eager as anyone to return to pre-pandemic life as we knew it.

On top of the Delta surge, rampant inflation, and a hiring crisis, Illinois lawmakers haven’t budged during the pandemic from their anti-business positions that are only making matters worse. Despite all the chaos going on around us, business owners are being forced to prepare for new taxes and wage hikes that make any recovery much harder, or even impossible for some small businesses. Inflation has surged costs for businesses, public health restrictions are limiting customers, liability lawsuits are forcing us to reallocate funds for legal purposes, and now increased taxes and expenses will force us into tough decisions regarding layoffs or even shuttering for good.

Springfield’s “pro-worker, pro-consumer” policies are hurting the very constituencies they seek to protect by enacting policies that make it more difficult for small businesses to thrive and create more jobs. Lawmakers must start working with small businesses to ensure we survive the pandemic and our employees are protected before any additional taxes or cost increases are considered.

David Robak

Prairie Grove