4 Small Biz Legislative Issues in Virginia

Date: January 12, 2015

As the new legislative session begins, here are some proposals that will affect small business owners the most.

4 Small Biz Legislative Issues in Virginia

Governor’s Budget Proposal. Governor Terry McAuliffe has proposed an increase of taxes and fees reaching nearly $50 million. Nicole Riley, NFIB’s state director of Virginia, says that many feel these fees will impact restaurant and retail industries the most. The proposals would require retailers to submit sales tax collections to the state sooner and increase fees such as restaurant inspection fees. NFIB opposes such tax and fee increases.

Minimum Wage. Proposals to increase the minimum wage above the federal standard of $7.25 an hour are buzzing in many state legislatures, including Virginia. One proposal would increase the minimum wage to $10.10 in three years. NFIB opposes a minimum wage increase because it’s difficult for small business owners to absorb increased labor costs and it reduces the opportunities for young and inexperienced workers to get jobs.

Small Business Finance Assistance. There are proposals to allow equity crowdfunding as a potential financing tool for entrepreneurs. This proposal would allow Virginians to invest in small businesses through crowdfunding websites. NFIB supports efforts to add crowdfunding as a financing tool, says Riley, because it would provide additional financial resources to entrepreneurs and provide oversight through the State Corporation Commission.

Procurement Reform. In July 2014, Governor McAuliffe signed an executive order (Advancing Equity for Small, Women and Minority Owned Businesses) that expands contracting opportunities for small businesses in the Commonwealth. The order sets the highest contracting goal in Virginia history of state expenditures to these certified businesses at 42 percent. NFIB supports efforts to minimize the damage of this order because it creates “microbusiness” designation for small businesses with no more than 25 employees and no more than $3 million in revenue, and requires set asides for microbusinesses if the purchase is under $10,000. Riley says that NFIB has heard from numerous members who do business with the state that are now losing business because of this.

If there are any members who are interested in learning more about how to get involved on these issues, such as contacting and visiting their legislators or testifying before committees, please contact Nicole Riley, NFIB Virginia state director, at 804-377-3661 or [email protected]

Which issue are you most concerned about for your business? Tell us in the comments section below.

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