When the speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives and the president of the Arizona Senate take time away from a busy session, it must be for a very special group of people. So, too, must these people be special for top committee chairmen to do the same.
These special people are the small-business owners of Arizona, whom the smart elected official know to be the true engine of the Arizona economy. By any standard, this year’s Small Business Day at the Capitol was an unqualified success, and NFIB thanks its members who made the effort to attend.
Making the effort. The importance of that point was driven home beautifully by Aimee Rigler, executive director of the Small Business Alliance, who recounted her own battles with bureaucracy and red tape that prompted her to action.
“After receiving a written warning from code compliance … one day prior to when our banner was supposed to be down (kind of like getting a warning for speeding before leaving the driveway), we decided we needed to get involved,” Rigler told Small Business Day attendees. “Continue to invest in the public process. We have helped change sign codes, improve processes, helped get policymakers elected … because we showed up.” Rigler’s story and her inspiring remarks can be read here.
The media were out in force for Small Business Day at the Capitol, learning from small-business owners about the hurdles they face as the state’s biggest creator of jobs and largest employer group. The Cronkite News service published one representative report.
Another, the Ahwatukee Foothill News, noted in its story,
“The event boasted a record number of 90 legislative leaders and 100 attendees from both the National Federation of Independent Business and guests … that came to show support and discuss the challenges that affect small businesses in Arizona.”
Out of sight is out of mind. During the cut and thrust of legislative activity, even lawmakers who should know better can fall victim to the persuasion of the supremely well-funded lobbying machines of trial lawyers, big labor, and advocates for bigger and bigger government—while small-business owners must attend fulltime to the running of their enterprises. To help blunt the force of big money, NFIB and its partners host annual Small Business Days at the Capitol to remind elected officials of Main Street’s message.
You don’t have to wait until next year’s to make your voice heard. Check this website regularly for the next series of Small Business Forum’s that NFIB’s hosts with the state’s top policymakers.
[Top of the page photo, from left to right: Rep. Lela Alston; NFIB/Arizona State Director Farrell Quinlan; Rep. Victoria Steele; NFIB Leadership Council Chairman Mark Griebelhaus; small-business owner Jeff Fleetham; Rep. Eric Meyer.]