2010 has been a very successful year for The South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce and there are still 2 months remaining before 2011.
Below is a very brief overview of wins this year and also some historical victories.
-Passage of national health care reform resulting in no mandate or tax on small businesses. 53,000 SC small businesses being eligible for health insurance tax credit this year. Insurance exchanges in 2014 to allow small businesses to leverage collective clout to drive down premiums and elimination of premium increases due to worker with pre-existing condition.
-Passage of the state cigarette tax increase with funds going to meet health care needs of Medicaid recipients (133% of poverty and below starting in 2014).
-Passage of national Wall Street Reform to reign in the excessive risky behavior of the financial industry that created the recession and create an agency for consumer, including small business, protection.
-Passage of the national Small Business Jobs Act which included a $30 billion lending fund to enable community banks to start making small business loans again and increase SBA lending ability.
-Successfully intervened in an SCE&G electric rate hike request of 9.52% to have it reduced to 4.88% over three years, a savings of over $96 million to customers.
-Successfully intervened in SCE&G’s proposed Demand Side Management program to enable small businesses more opportunity (inclusion in an energy information display pilot) to take conservation actions to reduce cost.
-Launched a “BuySC” (BuySC.org) program to encourage the public to purchase more goods and services from locally-owned South Carolina small businesses and establishing a free on-line directory of these businesses for customers to use.
-Reducing the income tax on small business from 7 to 5 percent saving small business owners $129 million each year.
-Regulation of workers’ compensation rates to reduce premiums.
-Job tax credits for the first time for small businesses.
-$1000 tax credit for new Registered Apprentices.
-Opposing SCE&G electricity and gas increases at the S.C. Public Service Commission resulting in savings to residential and business customers of over $172 million from 2003 to 2010.
-Opposing workers’ compensation proposed rate increases in the Administrative Law Court resulting in saving state businesses over $185 million on premiums since 2006.