The holiday season is fast approaching and while we’re seeing a decline in coronavirus cases in Illinois, small businesses are still being hammered by supply chain disruptions, among other pandemic-related issues. Though it’s apparent that we may not be able to solve this problem before December comes around, key proposals in the pipeline such as the bipartisan infrastructure bill and the Build Back Better plan can address other challenges hurting entrepreneurs.
The pandemic pushed businesses and consumers to pivot to online retail, and many are still shopping online However, broadband access is still not widely available in large parts of the country, which ultimately affects a business’s ability to create and fulfill consumer demand. The infrastructure bill being considered by Congress would help address this by investing in broadband expansion, which is critical to improving small business operations.
On the other hand, the Build Back Better plan includes robust investments in health care and child care, along with tax provisions that will benefit our communities and bolster small business recovery. Lawmakers have been negotiating this plan for months, and small businesses need this additional relief now to alleviate the burden of high health care and child care costs.
What’s more, a Small Business Majority survey found that small businesses are strongly supportive of tax provisions that will help ensure wealthy corporations pay their fair share and level the playing field.
Lawmakers must act now to pass these two key legislations to boost small business recovery. When we invest in our infrastructure and make small businesses part of the equation, our communities and families will thrive.
Geri Aglipay, Midwest Director, Small Business Majority
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Erosion of democracy
U.S. election outcomes have shown that Republicans are successfully selling cultural snake oil, and the Democrats are unsuccessfully selling policy medicine. The erosion of democracy can happen at different speeds, but always with complacent citizens surprised when they find themselves living in a totalitarian country with no recourse.
Mary F. Warren, Wheaton
Property tax reform
Property tax reform generally does not take into consideration the biggest problem with property taxes: They do not take into account a person’s ability to pay for them.
I didn’t give much thought to property taxes until one year I was out of work for much of it. And then came my property tax bill. I said, there is something wrong here.
The government needs to move some of the things in the property tax bill to another source of revenue, like the income tax. Since 2/3rds of the property tax goes for public education, that would be my first choice.
Now that would be real property tax reform.
Larry Craig, Wilmette