Creating an environment for job growth is working
As promised, many of us at the State House have been highly focused on passing bills which will improve the climate for job creation, cut red tape and allow for economic expansion.Some of these bills may have missed your radar screen. They certainly aren’t controversial, especially creative or revolutionary by themselves. But combined, we believe they make it substantially easier for our state’s employers to conduct business and reinforce the message that we are listening and trying to help.In a number of bills this session, we repealed or reduced the impact of state laws that are more onerous and restrictive than federal laws, with no apparent benefit.For example, we enabled manufacturers to recycle spent materials, such as the alcohol to clean circuit boards, saving costs and offering opportunities for multiple employers in a manufacturing chain, as most other states allow.Whenever possible and responsible, we reduced time-consuming red tape and expensive regulations, especially for small businesses. In one bill, we removed the duplicative signage requirements at gas stations. In another, we allowed master barbers and electricians to have two apprentices instead of just one on a job. We rolled back a time-consuming requirement for very small employers to write formal safety plans and file them with the state.Easing other restrictions, we allowed farmers to use agricultural plates on cargo vans in their local vicinity, and enabled licensed New Hampshire nano breweries to sell their products at farmers’ markets.Taxes are always important to businesses, and we made several important reforms in this area. The New Hamshire Department of Revenue Administration has been operating without any “check and balance” when considering their impact on small businesses. As a result of its exclusive regulatory power, the agency has been making its own tax forms, which have become overly burdensome. The House recently passed a bill that brings these forms back to the Legislature for public input and scrutiny.We also passed a bill that simplifies filing business taxes for our state’s tiniest businesses who have under $200,000 in gross sales.In addition, there are two major study commissions (one headed up by my husband, Senator Andy Sanborn) composed of both legislators and business leaders that are looking at ways to reduce red tape and modernize the interaction between business and government in New Hampshire.These groups, as well as members of the NH House Business Coalition, are continually working on ways to improve our state’s business friendliness, from initial formation to permitting, reporting, communication, regulation, conflict resolution and expansion. While we have not cured all of our economic challenges, we are on our way and with continued focus on a strong economic environment, we will make New Hampshire the best place in America to live, work and play.State Rep. Laurie Sanborn, R-Henniker, is founder and chair of the House Business Coalition. Rep. Bill Ohm, R-Nashua, is an active member of the coalition.