Small Business Policy Index 2016

Small Business & Entrepreneurship (SBE) Council released the 20th edition of its annual Small Business Policy Index, “Small Business Policy Index 2016: Ranking the States on Policy Measures and Costs Impacting Entrepreneurship and Small Business Growth.”

The Index ranks all 50 states according to various major government-imposed or government-related costs that have direct or indirect impact on entrepreneurship and business, as well as on start-ups and small growth eager companies.

The Index investigates in total 50 measures, from which:

  • 25 are tax related,
  • 18 relate to rules and regulations,
  • 5 focus on government spending and debt issues, and
  • 2 remaining measures deal with the effectiveness of important government undertakings.

The outcome is accessible through an interactive map displaying states’ ranking in color, with a summary per state provided after selecting a state.

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The most policy-friendly states to entrepreneurs under the “Small Business Policy Index 2016” are: 1) Nevada, 2) Texas, 3) South Dakota, 4) Wyoming, 5) Florida, 6) Washington, 7) Alabama, 8) Arizona, 9) Ohio, 10) Indiana, 11) Colorado, 12) Michigan, 13) Utah, 14) North Dakota, and 15) Virginia.

On the other side of the ranking we can find: 40) Maryland, 41) Maine, 42) Iowa, 43) Oregon, 44) Connecticut, 45) Vermont, 46) Hawaii, 47) Minnesota, 48) New York, 49) New Jersey, and 50) California.

The authors highlight several findings from the report, which are especially interesting to note:

  • Average real annual economic growth of the top 25 states’ was by 29.2 % faster than the average rate for the bottom 25 states.
  • Also, the top 25 states’ average state population growth of 4.9 percent from 2010 to 2015 was double compared to only 2.5 percent for the bottom 25 states.
  • The top 25 states also witnessed positive net domestic migration of a 2.00 million at the expense of the bottom 25 states, which lost 2.03 million people.

The SBE Council President and CEO Karen Kerrigan provides her explanation of the founded facts: “Policy matters for entrepreneurship and small business growth. Quite simply, when elected officials impose weighty tax and regulatory burdens, the increased costs and uncertainties mean reduced risk taking and less economic opportunity. The message from our ‘Small Business Policy Index’ to state officials is clear: If you are serious about helping small business, then reduce barriers to entrepreneurship and government costs imposed on small business.”

To access the Small Business Policy Index 2016 full report please click here.

It’s Time to Lift America’s Ban On Crude Oil Exports

oilby Barbara Kasoff, WIPP President

Since the start of the year, a surprising amount of support on both sides of the aisle to remove the ban on crude oil exports has emerged. Is this a sign that we are entering into a new era of bipartisan collaboration, specifically to form an energy agenda that will improve the nation’s security and get our economy moving again? While that still may be a ways off, it is clear this is one issue that could lead to historic collaboration on energy policies that will benefit American economy.

The 4.7 million businesswomen across the country that our coalition represents believe we can help secure the nation’s economic future through sound energy policies. We believe exporting our abundant energy resources must be a key part of that future and supporting an update in our crude oil export policy is the correct course of action and would allow our country to prosper at its full potential.

According to a report released this week by Margo Thorning, senior vice president and chief economist for the American Council for Capital Formation (ACCF), and William Shughart a research director for the Independent Institute and J. Fish Smith Professor in Public Choice at the University of Utah, the economic advantages and geopolitical benefits to lifting the ban on crude are clear.

The paper titled, “The Economic Case for Lifting the Crude Oil Export Ban,” cites the findings from five different studies conducted by various institutions such as IHS, Brookings Institute, the Aspen Institute, ICF International, and Resources for the Future, all of which agree that the case to update this policy is strong. Notably, they all conclude the same three major impacts lifting the ban on crude oil exports would have on the economy and consumers, including: job creation, an increase in U.S. GDP, and a downward pressure on consumer fuel prices.

For example, one of the most recently released studies mentioned in the report – by IHS – estimated that lifting the ban on crude oil exports would generate 390,000-859,000 new jobs annually nationwide and increase U.S. GDP between $86 billion and $170 billion over the next fifteen years.

Senator Lisa Murkowski, Chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, who has been one of the biggest champions of an examination of various U.S. energy policies, including the ban on crude oil exports, also noted the economic “no brainer” we are facing, stating, ““the economics are clear… lifting the ban on crude oil exports will benefit consumers.”

In addition to the much need economic stimulus from removing the ban, revising the current energy exports policy specifically with regard to crude oil, also extends U.S. geopolitical influence by strengthening our international trade relationships. Foreign allies would gain access to a stable and abundant source of crude oil that would overall create a more secure market.

Women thought leaders like Dr. Margo Thorning and Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski understand that repealing the ban on crude represents a fiscally responsible strategy to allow the U.S. to utilize our growing energy abundance.  Simply put, to quote Murkowski herself, “It’s time to lift America’s ban on crude oil exports.”