Off The Editor’s Desk – 11-7-2017

 “Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.” — Ronald Reagan

Have you ever wondered why all those small mom and pa businesses, that at one time lined the main streets of our small communities have for the most part disappeared?

[emember_protected] I can think of several reasons, one is that we have the freedom to jump into our car and travel many miles to the “Big City” to purchase our needed goods from those big box stores, and we believe that we saved some money by spending hours on the road.

Another is that the government is involved in business, in its attempt to regulate and tax those small entities. 

But there is so much government involvement in starting or maintaining a small business that the costs outweighs the income. It is almost a must that small business have to hire professionals to help them through the government regulations. Let’s start a new business! First you need to make sure its location is zoned right and a permit from the local unit of government is almost certain. Then you need a sales and operating permit from the state, and of course there is the federal ID number and state number that will be required, especially for your banking account. I forgot the needed sales tax permit.

Then there is all the paperwork, if you have employees, keeping track of their income and withholding and payments to both state and federal. Also you will be required to pay unemployment insurance, workers comp. insurance, liability insurance, health insurance and a host of other expenses.

Then to top that off, you will probably get to make reports to the government about your employees and your locations. At present, I, as an employer, received a visit from the state that audited my employee records to make sure that they were paid at or above the required minimum wage and that they got the paid overtime. I am also required to file an annual report about my business to the feds on a computer form, which required about an hour of my time. 

Now, a couple of months ago I received information that I was chosen to participate in the Federal Employee Report program. They wanted me to file a report on the number of employees and the number of mangers and their wages each month. I got a call from a nice lady in Missouri and I asked if I was required to participate in that program. I am not, but she calls every month to inquire how many employees I have. And, each month, the number is the same.

I wonder, how much money we as taxpayers spend on this program and others like it?

This all brings me to the enormous debt of the federal government and maybe some cutting of these programs could help that out. But, the other day someone questioned me about the amount of money that the state and federal governments spent on grants to local government bodies.

If my memory serves me right, most communities that are within our circulation area have received some sort of federal grant to fund a needed project in that community. Recently the City of Glenwood City received a large grant that will fund about half of the cost of the new well for the city’s water utility. I can tell everyone how appreciative members of the City Council were. This same appreciation was shown in other communities of this area when grants were received. I would hate to see that program discontinued, but the government is twenty trillion in the hole. I think it’s called “Distribution of Wealth.”

Thanks for reading! ~ Carlton

P.S.—I have just learned that the House of Rep. in Washington voted against the Protecting Seniors to Medicare Act, which repeals provisions in Obamacare that created the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which has been labeled the “Death Panel.” As it now stands, 15 unelected people have the power to cut Medicare, impose taxes, and ration care of the failed health care law. That board has the power to make decisions that could leave millions of seniors with fewer provider and service options. [/emember_protected]