Dear NFIB/Oregon members,
As we approach the end of another year, I tend to find that the holiday season brings to light a renewed sense of gratitude and optimism, even though the work ahead of us is often daunting and stressful.
Throughout the course of the year, it’s easy to get caught up in the moment with the many challenges of owning and operating a small business in Oregon. The state rarely makes it easy for our members. Politics and public policy are an ever-present reality. The concerns are many – and even the most-thorough business plans can be derailed by unforeseen actions from state lawmakers and regulators.
There is always a lot to worry about. Immediately following the holidays, Oregonians will be voting on Measure 101 – new proposed taxes on health care to be decided in a January 23 Special Election. Then in February, the Oregon Legislature will be back session for 35 days (and the short session is rarely used for non-controversial bills – just remember the minimum wage bill that passed in 2016.) Following the adjournment of the Legislature, political campaign season begins with May primaries, followed by an exhaustive summer of candidates and ballot measure advocates campaigning for our General Election votes.
Still, we have a lot to be thankful for, and hopeful about – at least I know I do. The economy is chugging along (even in Oregon), small-business optimism is historically high, and the stock market gains since last year’s election have been shockingly impressive.
But even more than these financial metrics, I am continually encouraged by the spirit of entrepreneurship that is alive and well within the membership of NFIB. I am constantly meeting new members and hearing your stories – about the challenges they have faced in business and about how they made it work, for their families, their employees and their customers.
I have tremendous confidence in you, the members of NFIB – and I am extremely grateful for the privilege of getting up and going to work for you each and every day.
Many blessings this holiday season,
Anthony K. Smith
NFIB/Oregon State Director