When I think of Ohio, I think of our thriving small business sector. Whenever I am in a little town or big city, I am pleasantly surprised by the many small businesses, family-owned or otherwise, that make their home in this great state.

Because of this, it has been a priority of mine in the Ohio House to ensure that we are passing bills that nurture small business growth and that tear down burdensome red tape. This can only be achieved through constant communication with these businesses and their owners, as well as with organizations that represent small businesses to make certain that we are truly making a difference.

I’m proud to say that during this General Assembly the Ohio House has initiated several pieces of legislation that make a difference in the lives of those who own small businesses.

House Bill 3 was an effort early on that significantly decreased the filing fee to start a business—taking it down 21 percent. What better way to grow businesses than by making it easier and cheaper to start one?

Through our state operating budget, passed a little over a year ago, we provided for a 75 percent income tax deduction for the first $250,000 of income for small businesses in FY ’16, provided a 100 percent tax deduction in FY’ 17, and levied a flat 3 percent rate above that. This additional money made possible for our vital small business community ensures that they have the opportunity to reinvest in their company and create more jobs.

We have also kept an eye out for regulatory reform opportunities. In 2011, Ohio launched the Common Sense Initiative, which focused on eliminating excessive or duplicative rules and/or regulations. This has proven to be quite successful and in fact, CSI has reviewed thousands of rules and regulations—amending or rescinding more than 50 percent of them. This is proof that it is important that government stay out of the way of business and ensure that we are not hindering their growth.

In speaking with constituents from the 29th House District, I have found that the economy and nurturing business growth are both issues that matter to them. I hope you’ll join me in continuing to find ways to help these businesses prosper.

Please never hesitate to reach out to my office should you have questions or comments on this topic or anything else related to state government.

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