Connecticut businesses had their annual day to appeal to the General Assembly, Wednesday, and they did not mince words in asking for Connecticut to become business friendly. As usual, the left-leaning legislative body did not get it, especially new Speaker of the House Brendan Sharkey, a business owner no less.
The president and CEO of the Central Connecticut Chamber of Commerce, Michael Nicastro, urged legislative leaders to stop picking “away at the fabric of the small business community” with their nitpicking legislation. He used, as an example, a proposal that would mandate employers give parents 20 hours of leave per year to part take in “parental engagement.”
According to the website CTNewsJunkie.com, Sharkey told Nicastro not to get worked up into a tizzy over these proposals.
“Particularly in the long session, any legislator can introduce any bill on any subject he or she wants,” Sharkey said. Without commenting on any particular piece of legislation, Sharkey said there are some “hair-brained” ideas out there and “they tend to make headlines.”
He said it was the first time he was hearing about the legislation, but added “it probably does not have any legs.”
Unfortunately, Mr. Speaker, that is the problem. Many of your liberal colleagues, along with a willing governor, get some of these “hair-brained” ideas that “tend to make headlines,” passed into law. Unless, of course, you think:
- paid sick leave
- the business entity tax – which was supposed to sunset
- the real estate conveyance tax – which was supposed to sunset
- increased corporation taxes
- continuous minimum wage increases, with a new proposal designed to get you and your fellow-lawmakers off the hook by making those hikes automatic
- over-the-top environmental regulations
- largest tax hike in Connecticut history
and various other schemes, did not “have legs.”
Nicastro and other businesses have a right to speak up, because many of these off-the-wall ideas, in long sessions and short, have become law. In recent years, “hair-brained” ideas, seemed to have ruled the day, thanks to a political agenda that has made Connecticut, one of the worst states in which to do business. Sadly, many of his entreaties and those of his colleagues, have fallen on deaf years. His legitimate fear is that they may do so again.