NFIB State Capitol Update
In her second report from the 2014 session, NFIB/Utah State Director Candace Daly says small-business owners are staring down the double barrels of gas tax and minimum-wage increases.
NFIB is concerned about the possibility of an increase in the gas tax. Legislators have been talking about it for several years. The Senate is poised and ready to move on it, but House Speaker Rebecca Lockhart stated in her opening-session speech, “No Gas Tax.” The majority of House members are firm with her on this.
House Bill 25, sponsored by Rep. Lee Perry, would preserve the rights for a private landowner when a government entity is trying to acquire the property.
House Bill 14 and Senate Bill 35 would continue the great effort that Utah has with keeping administrative rules being kept under control by requiring state agencies to review and report. SB 35 renews the process for the public to have a rule reviewed by the Legislature to make sure the rules are never more restrictive than code.
There is an effort by Representative Lynn Hemmingway, to increase the minimum wage in Utah to $10.25, which will probably not go far in the legislative session. This bill would kill entry-level employment and encourage employers to update technology. This would make more and more companies think about changing their entry level jobs into self- serve kiosks if that is a possibility.
There are a few bills clarifying workers’ compensation and unemployment that are favorable for small business. NFIB is closely monitoring these.