Continuing Oversight of Regulatory Impediments to Job Creation: Job Creators Still Buried by Red Tape

Witness and Testimony Documents
Chief Executive Officer
Vision Bank
Senior Director EHS
Crop Production Services, Inc. on behalf of the Agricultural Retailers Association
Vice President, Plastics Division
American Chemistry Council
Barry Rutenberg & Associates, Inc.
on behalf of the National Association of Home Builders
President
HNTB Holdings, Ltd. on behalf of the American Road & Transportation Builders Association
Vice President & General Manager
Construction Specialties, Inc.
July 19, 2012,

9:30am in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building

 

In Congress, we hear it every day from our constituents – Americans’ top concern is job creation. The June figures show that unemployment has remained unchanged at 8.2 percent. There are 12.7 million Americans unemployed. Almost 42 percent have been unemployed for six months or more. The verdict is in – the President’s stimulus plan, that counted on the government to create jobs, was a failure.

For those of us who understand that small business is responsible for over half of all job creation, the failure of government to stimulate job growth is no surprise.  What is surprising is the President’s recent hostility towards job creators – publically stating that “the private sector is doing fine” and claiming that “if you have got a business, you didn’t build that.”  These out of touch statements renew concerns that the President lacks a fundamental understanding of why our economy continues to falter. Furthermore, our government can create the environment for the private sector to grow jobs. But under this administration, it won’t.

Today, we want to remind the President that small business, and not the government, is the primary driver of job creation in this country. Moreover – they are not “fine.” Government – what it does, what it doesn’t do and how it does it – creates the climate for the private sector to create jobs.  But this administration simply doesn’t understand that key point.

Bureaucrats and red tape are putting the brakes on job creators who want to invest and grow their businesses. A recent Gallup poll found that nearly half of small businesses are not hiring because they are “worried about new government regulations.”  In other words, they are worried about President Obama’s red tape. 44 percent of likely voters believe EPA regulations hurt the economy and 53 percent of registered voters say “federal regulations are one of the major reasons the economy is struggling.” According to the National Federation of Independent Business, “regulations and red tape” is one of the “single most important problems” for small business. 

Some within the Obama Administration are honest enough to admit that excessive regulation can hurt jobs.  In a report to Congress, The White House conceded that EPA regulations caused U.S. companies to invest in other countries, which may have had a negative impact on domestic jobs and growth.

Today, the Oversight Committee released a new report on red tape that job creators have identified as job killers. The facts are grim: many job-killing regulations identified in previous Committee staff reports remain a problem, and many more have surfaced. According to a recent report, the Obama Administration issued 106 new major rules in its first three years, adding more than $46 billion per year in costs for taxpayers.

Americans know that red tape is not confined to new federal regulations. It also burdens small businesses by preventing projects from ever breaking ground. These new projects are tied up in bureaucratic purgatory.

The Committee found that this administration, aided by a growing army of bureaucrats, is abusing their discretion as they issue these costly rules. In some cases, the courts have stepped in and stopped agencies like the NLRB, the EPA, and the SEC from abusing their regulatory powers. Today we will hear directly from job creators who can explain how red tape is preventing them from bringing on more workers. We hope that this effort will help educate bureaucrats since the private sector is not “doing fine”.