About the Problem

America’s job creation engine is sputtering.

Small businesses are hit particularly hard by regulatory compliance, with regulations costing them over $10,000 per employee; 36% higher than the cost to larger businesses.

Entrepreneurship

About the Policy

The federal government should develop a regulatory “road map” website that enables entrepreneurs to view all of the federal, state and local regulations that may affect their business.

Public Support

81% of All Polled
85% of Democrats
82% of Republicans
76% of Independents

Polling data derived from three national surveys conducted by Cohen Research Group in February and March 2016. Each survey had a sample size of at least 1,000 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.1%

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According to the National Federation of Independent Business’s Small Business Optimism Index, small business owners have cited regulations as a top impediment to conducting business for over 65 months in a row. This makes sense: today, there are 3,348 federal regulations in the pipeline, with nearly 1/3 impacting small business directly.

The cost of monitoring and maintaining compliance, combined with the burden of outdated regulation hurts American business’s ability to compete. The US is no longer one of the top ten easiest places to start a business. In fact, the World Bank found that it’s easier to start a new business in Portugal, Romania, Panama, Hungary and Belarus than in the U.S.

To understand the depth of the issue, consider:

  • 74 percent of small business owners believe that businesses and consumers are over-regulated and 21 percent of small business owners cite regulations as their single most important problem.
  • 54 percent of small business owners say countries like China and India are more supportive of their small businesses and manufacturers than the United States.
  • 72 percent of small businesses reported that regulations were hurting their “operating environment” and 55 percent of small business owners say they would not start a business today given what they know now and in the current regulatory environment.
  • Nearly 60 percent of small business owners think it’s a bad time for small business expansion.

Small businesses are hit particularly hard by regulatory compliance, with regulations costing them over $10,000 per employee; 36 percent higher than the cost to larger businesses. One way to ease the burden on entrepreneurs would be for the federal government to create a regulatory “roadmap” website that enables entrepreneurs to view in one place all of the federal, state and local regulations that may affect their business.

By making the system more accessible and transparent, entrepreneurs will be able to navigate the regulatory environment more effectively, making business startup and compliance cheaper and simpler.