August 31, 2015
Obama’s NLRB ends the franchise business model, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) finally issued its ruling concerning the relationship between employers, franchise arrangements and independent contractors. The agency issued a radical reconstruction of the “joint employer rule,” which has been settled law for decades. In its ruling the NLRB expanded the definition to include both indirect, direct, and even potential, unexercised control over employees in a joint employer determination. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens said that under the prior rule, entities were joint employers only when they shared direct control over the terms and conditions of employment for the same employees.
“For the labor unions and the Obama administration that sought this result, it will make it easier for big labor unions to strike and organize franchise business employees and small independent contractors,” said Owens.
August 27, 2015
Road unions for higher taxes, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
According to a recently filed campaign finance report, the three labor unions behind the “Citizens for Fair Taxes” campaign committee have ponied up $1.15 million for their petition drive effort to almost double business taxes in Michigan. In this editorial, NFIB State Director Charlie Owens makes it clear what the real motivations behind the effort are:
“It should be no surprise then that the real motivation behind the plan has little to do with ‘fairness’ or ‘citizens’ and a lot to do with road construction labor unions boosting road funding so that they can pocket most of the money.”
August 25, 2015
Marco Rubio exposes White House war on small business, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
United States Senator and presidential candidate Marco Rubio touched on the challenges of trying to run a small business under the Obama administration during his recent speech to the Detroit Economic Club. During his remarks, he referenced two fictional people, “David,” a small business owner, and “Daniella,” an employee. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens observed that:
“While the people referenced in Rubio’s remarks may have been fictional, there are hundreds of thousands of real life small business owners that are facing similar challenges.”
August 25, 2015
Ban the Box efforts seek to hide criminal records, Ali Velshi / Al Jazeera America
Efforts to “Ban the Box” have been making news lately and NFIB Media Director Jack Mozloom appeared last night on Al Jazeera America to defend small business owners’ right to have a conversation with an applicant about a possible criminal record. Host Ali Velshi pushed hard but Jack made the point that a criminal record is a matter of public information:
“A felony conviction is public information. What ban the box says is that small employers are not allow have the conversation. They can’t ask. And for a lot of our members who are otherwise willing to hire people with a felony conviction, they still want to have the conversation. But ban the box says you can’t talk about it until you’ve made a formal offer.”
Watch the full interview here.
August 15, 2015
No Evidence Michigan Business Owners Support New EPA Mandates, By Jack Spencer / Capitol Confidential
Jack Spencer of Michigan Capitol Confidential drills into the data thrown out by an organization claiming to speak for small business on environmental issues. It’s no surprise that the “polling” numbers claimed by Environmental Entrepreneurs, a national group that bills itself as “The Independent Business Voice for the Environment” are half-baked and suspect when tough questions bring no response from the group. NFIB Assistant State Director Amanda Fisher offers the observation that:
“There are well over 500,000 small businesses in Michigan, and our experience is that the majority of small businesses we represent do not agree with the recent EPA rules”
August 4, 2015
Fake business groups support new energy rules, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
Once again, liberals are trying to steal the credibility of small business by creating bogus front groups that claim small business support for extreme environmental policies of the Obama administration. In this case, the scam groups claim support for the administration’s latest power plant rules. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens exposes the less than credible background of one of the groups claiming to speak on behalf of small business:
“A news story in the Washington Examiner in 2013 pointed out that, for all the big talk by the organization’s CEO about how everyone has to “pay their fair share of taxes”, he apparently has a problem paying his own. In an ultimate twist of irony the same story reported how the self-appointed small business advocate stiffed a small business by not paying his bills.”
August 3, 2015
The EPA’s “Waterworld” fantasy, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers are out to control private property by fiat with the latest Clean Water Act rule expansion. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens examines the new rule and why the NFIB is challenging it in court.
“The new WOTUS rule means that if you own property that has water on it for any period of time during the year, you should presume that the EPA has jurisdiction over it, and you need a federal permit before altering or developing it in any way. Before the new rule, most property owners could presume the opposite – no federal jurisdiction.”
July 29, 2015
Poll shows voters support corporate tax hike to fund road fixes, by Tim Skubick / WLNS Channel 6 News
LANSING, MI (WLNS) – A new poll suggests 60 percent of the voters want to raise the corporate income tax and use that money to fix the roads and schools. Will Michigan voters support hiking the corporate income tax as three labor unions have suggested?
NFIB State Director, Charlie Owens tells News 6 that there should be no surprise that polls paid for by the labor union that is backing the proposal would favor the proposal:
“Wording is the key. If you put it into perspective that it is an 83% increase instead of going from 6 to 11 percent then I think that would have gotten a different response.”
State Director Charlie Owens talks with News 6 reporter Tim Skubick about labor union attempts to hike business taxes with a ballot petition drive.
July 23, 2015
NFIB responds to Labor Union Proposal to Raise Corporate Income Tax, Michael Cohen – Capitol City Recap / WILS Radio
Charlie Owens discussed NFIB’s opposition to a labor union backed effort to raise the state’s corporate income tax from 6 percent to 11 percent with Michael Cohen of WILS radio.
“Proposal backers should be honest with the voters and call themselves ‘Citizens for More Taxes’,” said Owens. “If they succeed with this proposal, Michigan will have one of the highest corporate income tax rates in the country and the result will be less investment by business and a subsequent loss of jobs and opportunity for Michigan’s working families.”
Listen to the interview here
July 23, 2015
Corporations must pay ‘fair share’ to fix roads, says Michigan group pushing ballot proposal, By Jonathan Oosting / Mlive
The labor union front group “Citizens for Fair Taxes” announced plans for a petition drive in support of initiated legislation that would raise the Corporate Income Tax from 6 percent to 11 percent and devote the revenue to roads. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens responded:
“This is just another attempt at using class warfare as a front to raise taxes on those who provide the jobs in Michigan”
July 12, 2015
Government knows best when scheduling workers, By Charlie Owens / Detroit News
The latest small business mandate being pushed by labor unions and the left seeks to dictate to employers how they should schedule their workers. NFIB State Director Charlie Owens discusses the folly of another bad liberal idea in this Detroit News OpEd:
“It becomes rapidly clear that only a government bureaucrat or a labor advocate, neither of whom having a clue how to run a business, could come up with something this idiotic. No business on Earth, especially the smallest businesses hardest hit by this kind of nonsense, has a crystal ball to predict what is going to happen at the workplace two weeks in advance of anything.”
July 8, 2015
IRS punishes employers for helping workers, Frank Beckmann Show / WJR Radio
With the IRS now fining businesses for reimbursing employees who purchase insurance coverage on their own, NFIB is working hard to get the word out and get this problem fixed. Yesterday morning, NFIB Director of Legislative Affairs Kevin Kuhlman spoke with Frank Beckman of WJR Michigan.
Kevin said that NFIB research shows that 1 in 7 small businesses may have these type of arrangements right now, representing possibly hundreds of thousands of workers who could see their benefits reduced.
Listen to the interview here
July 7, 2015
Number of people collecting unemployment plummets, By Tom Gantert / Capitol Confidential
Michigan Capitol Confidential reports that the number of people on unemployment in the state has dropped by 90 percent in the last six years. The state’s unemployment rate went from 14.9 percent in June 2009 to 5.4 percent in April 2015. The unemployment rate was 5.5 percent in May.
July 1, 2015
Gov. Snyder signs law to bar municipal wage, employment rules, By Associated Press / Morning Sun
On Tuesday, Governor Rick Snyder signed a law prohibiting Michigan municipalities from requiring businesses to pay wages, benefits or provide sick days exceeding state or federal requirements. The measure was opposed by Democrats, unions and local governments. The measure will also prevent future enactment of prevailing wages for construction workers working on public projects. The Associated Press reported NFIB’s support of Governor Snyder’s law and noted that Michigan is the 15th state to sign pre-emptive legislation.
“It is clear that various national front groups backed by organized labor are behind these efforts and they had Michigan on their list of states where they hoped to run similar local city campaigns,” said NFIB/Michigan State Director Charlie Owens.