Small Business Owners Reject Wisconsin Governor’s Call for Paid Leave Mandate

Date: January 24, 2024

Following the Governor’s State of the State address, small businesses renew calls for tax cuts and fewer mandates to promote economic opportunity.

MADISON (Jan. 24, 2024) – Following Governor Tony Evers’ State of the State address, where among other issues, he highlighted the workforce challenges Wisconsin small business owners face, NFIB State Director Bill G. Smith issued the following statement:

“While Governor Evers is correct in acknowledging the challenges of Wisconsin’s workforce, Main Street differs on the solutions to this challenge. Our small business owners want to take care of their employees and meet their customers’ needs. Reducing the income tax burden would give small business owners more resources to raise wages, expand benefits, and create new jobs. Cutting taxes would also make Wisconsin more competitive with neighboring states and attract more hardworking men and women to our workforce. That’s why it was so disappointing the Governor vetoed historic tax reform in December.

“Despite small business owners’ repeated objections, the Governor is once again calling for expanded paid leave. Small businesses operate on infamously thin margins. A recent NFIB survey found that inflation is the single most important problem for small business owners. Instead of alleviating the worker shortage Main Street is facing, this costly mandate would exacerbate the challenges of owning and operating a small business.

“We’ll continue working with state lawmakers, the Governor, and his cabinet on legislation that supports small businesses and promotes greater economic opportunity in Wisconsin.”


According to a recent NFIB survey, 23 percent of small business owners reported that inflation was their single most important problem in operating their business, up one point from last month, and replacing labor quality as the top concern. CLICK HERE to view the full survey.

In December, the Governor rejected a $2 billion tax cut that would have reduced the individual income tax burden for thousands of small business owners. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Since 2015, NFIB Wisconsin has lobbied against paid leave proposals due to the costly burden it would impose on small business owners. CLICK HERE to learn more.


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