Small Business Reacts to Women’s Chamber on Minimum Wage Hike

Albany (February 7, 2013) – Mike Durant, State Director for the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), New York’s leading advocate for small business owners, today issued the following statement in response to the Women’s Chamber of Commerce and other corporate groups that today endorsed a proposal to increase the minimum wage:

“A majority of employers in New York already pay more than the minimum wage.  And nothing prevents corporations and big businesses from paying as much as they deem necessary.  But many small businesses simply cannot absorb higher labor costs.  This is the problem with a blanket government mandate that imposes the same conditions on every business regardless of their circumstances.

“Small businesses have had a much more difficult time in this economy than corporations, many of which make their profits overseas where labor costs and taxes are more favorable.  Small businesses operate on very thin margins and the costs imposed by government affect them disproportionately.  Raising the minimum wage on small businesses that can’t afford it will result in fewer small businesses, fewer jobs and a slower state economy.  

 “NFIB research predicts the loss of thousands of jobs as the result of a higher minimum wage.  And there is abundant academic research showing that higher minimum wage laws have destroyed jobs, especially for teenagers and workers with the lowest skills and least experience.

 “If our friends at the Women’s Chamber of Commerce and other Chamber groups want to improve the economy, they should join Small Business owners in seeking lower taxes and fewer meddlesome regulations like this so that employers of every size can prosper, invest, expand and create jobs.”

For more information about NFIB, please visit www.nfib.com.

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About Mike Durant

Mike Durant was named New York State Director of NFIB in May 2011. Prior to joining NFIB as the Assistant State Director in May 2010, Durant began his career in the New York Senate working in the Office of Member Services. From there, he served in a number of positions during former New York Governor George E. Pataki’s administration. As a Research Specialist in the New York State Office of Demographic Policy, Mike was responsible for drafting a redistricting proposal for Governor Pataki. In addition, Mike served as a Research Specialist for the Empire State Development Corporation, as well as the Associate Commissioner of Human Resource Management with the New York Department of Labor. Durant also spent four years working at the Questar III BOCES as a specialist focusing on the complex formulas that drive aid to school districts across the state while also taking a lead role in the state legislative/budget process as it related to education policy. These past positions have given Mike a deep understanding of the complex political economics of the State of New York. Active in the community, Durant has served on a number of boards in both the village of Ballston Spa and Town of Milton. Durant received his bachelor’s degree from Siena College in Loudonville, New York and resides in Ballston Spa with his wife and two children.
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