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News & Press: Arizona Business News Updates

2014 ASBA Legislative Agenda

Tuesday, January 7, 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gabe Salcido
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Arizona’s Preeminent Voice of Small Business

One of the challenges that small businesses and entrepreneurs struggle with is the occasional feeling of isolation. It’s hard not to feel isolated when so much time and energy is spent in the trenches running a business, working to make the next payroll and fighting for survival. That feeling of isolation can turn to angst when we consider the decisions that elected officials make and how it will impact business. The anxiety is compounded when the trenches don’t leave much time and energy to engage in the political process. Today’s 24-hour news cycle also serves as a constant reminder that free enterprise and the incentives to entrepreneurism are under attack in America as well.

We understand what Arizona small businesses are dealing with and we’re pleased to say, we have your back. ASBA’s leadership team and volunteer board members all come from the small business world and we understand the challenges entrepreneurs face because we face them too. There are anti-business efforts that threaten free enterprise and entrepreneurism by seeking to raise taxes, increasing regulations and other attacks that increase the cost of doing business in Arizona. ASBA is committed and will continue to serve as the preeminent voice of Arizona’s small business community and advocating on their behalf.

We are pleased to present our 2014 Legislative Agenda outlining our priorities for Arizona small businesses. You will find that our political priorities are focused on the most important policy issues that impact every small business in Arizona. These issues are all critical in the battle to advance free enterprise and entrepreneurism, a fight that we are willing to engage on your behalf.

-Rick Murray, CEO


About ASBA

The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) is a non-partisan, privately funded trade association representing 11,000+ small businesses that employ over ½ million people. ASBA is a statewide organization representing member businesses throughout Arizona in all 15 counties and 30 legislative districts. Founded by small business owners and in continuous operation for (40) forty years, ASBA is the largest trade association in Arizona and the only statewide association dedicated solely to serving and supporting small businesses.

In addition to being a political organization, ASBA is a statewide buying group where members receive group discounts on essential products and services from paper clips to medical insurance. ASBA also offers programs to help its members promote themselves and take advantage of learning and networking opportunities. ASBA employs a talented staff of association management professionals in its Phoenix and Tucson offices, and is led by a board of directors of volunteer members.


Arizoan Economic DevelopmentEconomic Development
providing support to Arizona small businesses

Arizona’s small business community continues to lead job creation and the economic recovery of our state. While much of Arizona’s economic development activity is focused on the recruitment of new and large businesses to Arizona, ASBA supports legislative policies that will benefit and provide resources to Arizona small businesses. ASBA supports economic development policies specifically directed to Arizona small businesses that provide:

  • Increased access to capital for start-up, and early-stage firms
  • Streamlined and accessible local procurement sources that provide preference to Arizona bidders, over nonresident bidders, for contracts awarded by competitive bid; and
  • ncreased efforts to support Arizona’s K-12 and higher educational system that prepares competent, work-ready Arizonans for current Arizona jobs.

Health CareHealth Care
compliance with ACA and access to superior healthcare plans

ASBA’s most recent public policy survey ranked Healthcare as one of the top three issues directly affecting Arizona small businesses. The increasing uncertainty on the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on small businesses has caused owners and operators to be concerned. ASBA will look to Arizona’s elected leaders to assist ASBA and its members to:

  • Understand the Affordable Care Act and comply with the law
  • Obtain access to the best and most affordable healthcare plans available in Arizona
  • Obtain access to an efficient and reliable online portal to shop the healthcare marketplace; and
  • Obtain access to ancillary products such as dental, life and long term care insurance available through the same online portal.

reduce taxes, make it easy to comply with Arizona’s tax code

Taxation continues to be one of the top policy priorities of Arizona’s small business community. Property, payroll, personal income and sales taxes rank as the top four tax burdens on Arizona businesses that entrepreneurs attribute to stifling job creation. ASBA supports tax policies that reduce the cost of doing business in Arizona which makes it an attractive place to do business, and nationally more competitive. ASBA will advocate for legislation and efforts that:

  • Provide meaningful and equitable reduction of taxes on Arizona businesses to incentivize job creation and capital investment
  • Ensure the implementation of the single website/portal where Arizona businesses can file all Transaction Privilege (Sales) Tax returns and make payments
  • Update the Arizona Department of Revenue (ADOR) software so that all income tax returns can be filed electronically
  • Reduce the complexity and administration of complying with Arizona’s tax code; and
  • Oppose any measures that would impose taxation on services.


education = economic growth and prosperity

ASBA strongly believes that education and workforce development is a cornerstone to Arizona’s economic growth and prosperity. Preparing students to meet the needs of tomorrow’s employment opportunities, and offering specialized training to support the current needs of existing local industries and business, are priorities that our state legislature must support. ASBA also believes that increasing the performance of Arizona schools and teachers is essential. ASBA supports measures that:

  • Include a market and achievement based compensation structure to recruit and maintain qualified instructors and administrators
  • Support post-secondary education that develops a work-ready talent pool aligned with the needs of Arizona employers
  • Offer educational choice through charter schools, distance learning, home schooling and career and technical education programs; and
  • Support curriculums that promote the development of fundamental life and work and other soft skills.

lower the cost of doing business by reducing regulatory burdens

When Arizona businesses are burdened with excess regulations, the cost of doing business increases and our competitiveness as a state diminishes. Burdensome documentation, excess regulations and inefficient compliance processes attribute to higher fixed costs, which increase the breakeven point for every Arizona small business. ASBA urges the Arizona Legislature to lower the cost of doing business in Arizona by:

  • Maintaining the temporary moratorium on all new agency rules not required by federal law
  • Increasing transparency by publishing all state business regulations on the Secretary of State’s website
  • Opposing legislation that increases liability to employers beyond that required by federal law; and
  • Opposing arbitrary wage and hour mandates, and other forms of state and federal encroachment into free enterprise.


Our most recent public policy survey revived that Economic Development, Healthcare, Taxation, Education and Regulation continue to be the five most critical issues impacting Arizona small businesses. ASBA is committed to focusing its public policy efforts on these priority issues and taking action on legislation that impact them. Our efforts will be primarily focused at the state level, and some federal, where ASBA is best positioned to make the greatest impact in support of Arizona small businesses.

ASBA’s Public Policy Team includes:

- Rick Murray, Chief Executive Officer, ASBA

- Lee Miller, ASBA Lobbyist

- Jerry Bustamante, ASBA Sr. VP, Public Policy

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