November 19

Bruce Billson Your Passion For Small Business Will Be Sorely

Bruce Billson Your Passion For Small Business Will Be Sorely

Bruce Billson (federal member for Dunkley) announced Passion on Tuesday 24 November that he would be leaving politics following the next election. He made this decision after being demoted from the Minister for Small Business role in September’s rise of Malcolm Turnbull to the Prime Minister.

Billson’s resignation from politics is disappointing for those who want to see small business policies that work. He was undoubtedly one of Australia’s most passionate Small-Business Ministers. This sector employs nearly half of the Australian workforce and represents 99.7%.

Billson’s loyalty and support for Tony Abbott, the former Prime Minister of Australia, came at a cost. Turnbull subsequently deposed Billson from his front bench Ministerial position in favor of Kelly O’Dwyer who was both Minister for Small Business as Assistant Treasurer. Turnbull had offered Billson the possibility of a junior portfolio as Minister for Cities. But it wasn’t attractive to him.

Passion Retirement From Parliament

Billson made it public by announcing his retirement from Parliament. He noted that he had spent 20 years in Parliament, six of them as Shadow Minister or Minister. Stinking for small businesses, family enterprises, start-ups, and the self-employed community. He felt, however, that, It is clear that I love my job, but it is impossible for me to do what I love fully. Australia’s Minister for Small Business over Time

Bruce Billson was Australia’s 15th Minister For Small Business. Barry Jones was the first to take office during the Hawke Labor Government’s early years in 1988. Jones serve the position for two years and three month, during which time his duties were combine with those of Minister Science and Customs.

David Beddall was the next to follow, with a term that lasted almost three years and covered the Prime Ministerial careerss of Paul Keating and Bob Hawke. He had to share the portfolio of small businesses with science, construction and customs. To his credit, Beddall ordered a review of Australia’s small-business sector to identify its problems, opportunities, and challenges. This report publish in 1990. It is still one of the most important documents in Australia relating to small business policy.

Keating Government Passion Collapse

Chris Schacht was next, and served almost three years until the Keating government collapsed under John Howard’s coalition victory. Five Small Business Ministers were appoint by Howard: Geoff Prosser (March 1996 – July 1997), Peter Reith (1997 – January 2001), Ian Macfarlane (1901 – November 2001), Joe Hockey (1911 – October 2004), and Fran Bailey (October 2004 December 2007). Many of these Ministers had small business portfolios that included consumer affairs, tourism and employment.

In 2007, Kevin Rudd was elect Prime Minister and appoint Craig Emerson Minister for Small Business, Independent Contractors, and the Service Economy. Emerson was in office until 2010, when he was replace by Nick Sherry by Julia Gillard, Prime Minister of Australia.

Gillard recognized the importance of having a Minister for Small Business in the cabinet. The turbulent years of Gillard’s government saw the appointment a rapid succession of Ministers: Mark Arbib, December 2011 to March 2012; Brendan O’Connor, March 2012 to February 2013, Chris Bowen (February 2012 to March 2013); Gary Gray (March 2013 to September 2013).

Therefore, the Small Business area is often part of a larger portfolio that ministers have. It can quickly become an afterthought if it doesn’t have its own department or legislative framework.

Billson’s Legacy

After Tony Abbott’s election win in September 2013, Billson was elect Minister. He had previously held the small business shadow portfolio. Although his term was short at 2 years and 3 months, he was well-prepare for the job. The policies related to small businesses were among the best-developed of all the policy platforms that the Liberal Party had before the 2013 election.

November 19

Small Business Policy The Two Main Parties Stand

Small Business Policy The Two Main Parties Stand

We are only four weeks away from the federal election, and the major parties small business policies are starting to take shape. Although much of the information in these policy packages is familiar, it is worth looking at the different policies and how they might impact small businesses.

The Business Policies Of The Government

The Australian Labor Party’s (ALP), has repackaged its past announcements to focus its small business policy. These include the incorporation of the small business portfolio to the inner cabinet, and the appointment Mark Brennan as Federal Small Business Commissioner.

Both of these initiatives will be welcome. Mark Brennan is a great choice for this position. He does not have the necessary legislative power or departmental resources to fill this role. This is something I previously wrote about in.

The problem for the government is the constant revolving door effect of small business ministers since the 2010 federal election. First was Senator Nick Sherry (2010)-2011, then Mark Arbib (2011)-2012, followed by Brendan O’Connor (2012)-2013, Chris Bowen (2013), and now Gary Gray.

The continual rotation of ministers, even though the ministerial position was move to the inner cabinet after Brendan O’Connor’s appointment, is still a problem. This does not promote good policy formulation, and it reduces the minister’s ability get to the top of the portfolio.

Benefits From The Business Government

Small firms can also receive tax benefits from the government in the form the tax reforms that allow them to instant asset write off (to be limit at $6,500) and the tax carry back reforms. These announcements made in the 2012 federal budget by Wayne Swan. These are combine with small business support via Enterprise Connect and the help line.

The ALP also proposes that the Council of Australian Business be included in the Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) dialogue. This isn’t a new idea. COSBOA was granted a seat at COAG 2012 discussions that were focused on “meeting red tape challenge”.

Fair Work Australia will also be subject to the ALP’s requirements that employees who make unreasonable claims to Fair Work Australia must pay their costs. Although this is a good initiative, it does not address the core issues of the federal industrial relations system.

The Productivity Commission has given the task of examining the relationship between regulators and small businesses. This policy was announce by Brendan O’Connor in December 2012. It is intend to produce a report card on the effects of state and federal regulations on small-business costs.

In July, the draft report of the Productivity Commission went public. There are some valuable observations and recommendations in it. Many of the recommendations are clear and focus on government agencies making regulations more accessible to small businesses, especially sole traders. These recommendations are a good starting point for any new government. However, it will difficult to actually get these things done.

The Policies Of The Opposition

The Liberal National Party (LNP), however, has a longer list of policies that are design to attract small businesses. Contrary to Labor, the Liberals had a consistent Shadow minister for small business in Bruce Billson. He was appoint in 2010.

This month’s The Coalition’s Policy for Small Business statement outlines 23 policy initiatives. These initiatives can divided into at most four areas: advocacy; regulatory reforms; financial measures, direct support and infrastructure.

Business Advocacy

The LNP proposes that the portfolio of the small business minister be elevate to the inner cabinet as part of its advocacy strategy. Labor has done this before, but the key difference is the relocation of small business portfolios to the Department of Treasury. This is a unique location and could cause some difficulties in implementation, but the relocation could give the small business area greater influence within Canberra.

The Board of Taxation, The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. Snd Fair Work Australia have also given the opportunity to nominate representatives from small businesses into key economic bodies. The appointment of a Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman will further enhance this power.

November 19

Open Letter To Brendan O’Connor Get Small Business

Open Letter To Brendan O'Connor Get Small Business

This open letter is to Brendan O’Connor the newly appointed Federal Minister For Small Business. Dear Minister O’Connor We wish you well on your new job and welcome you to our small business portfolio. Two people with a long history working with small businesses as educators and counsellors, consultants, researchers, and researchers wrote this letter in good faith.

Many of the previous small-business ministers were criticised for not understanding this complex and large part of the economy. How do you get small businesses? This is our guide to what you should be focusing on.

The Importance Letter Of Small Business Is Vital To The Economy

We recommend that the Cabinet and you first acknowledge the importance of small businesses to the economy. Over 99% of Australian businesses are small to medium and they employ approximately 65% of the workforce. This means that there are approximately 2 million small-business owners, employing around 5 million people. We are all voters, and all of us have an interest in the policies that your government puts in place for small businesses. Let’s not forget this as we move on.

It is not about a particular sector. Small business is all about people. Small business should be viewed as a whole community and not as a single sector. All industries have small businesses. Small businesses are more common than small retailers or service firms.

Small businesses are closely knit groups of people who work together to earn a living, care for their employees, pay their bills and take time for their families. Many small business owners work long hours. 64% of small-business owners work more than 40 hours per week, while 36% work more than 50 hours.

These small businesses aren’t like large corporations. They are people who are looking to make a living through hard work and enterprise. Microbusinesses employing only their owner make up 62% of all small businesses. They take risks, create wealth and jobs, and usually ask for a fair deal. They are people and not organizations.

It’s not About Fighting Red Tape, It’s About Fighting To Get A Fair Go

Avoid getting caught up in the belief that small business faces the greatest challenge is red tape. Many of your predecessors have used this approach. This is the mantra that small business lobbyists, journalists, and radio announcers endorse. Despite the fact that small businesses may hate red tape, many don’t see it as a problem.

Running a business requires compliance, taxation, licensing systems, and compliances. Australia is home to some of the most efficient government systems in the world, compared to other countries. The United Nations considers Australia a leader in egovernment.

To reduce red tape, the first step is to align federal and state jurisdictions. Every industry sector has its own issues. Your role to ensure small businesses are protect in any reforms.

Access to bank financing at attractive interest rates for small businesses should be a priority. During the Global Financial Crisis, your government supported our major banks. They are still among the most profitable banks worldwide, but they could do more for small businesses to lower capital costs.

Bridging The Digital Letter Divide, Skills Gaps

Another opportunity is the rollout of National Broadband Network. According to the Sensis Small Business Index, March 2012, increasing digital footprint through online technologies was the top priority

Future government policies should focus on helping small businesses to get online and maximize their e-business potential. Online technologies can use to create single entry points for Federal agencies and State agencies. This will reduce compliance costs. Access more data that is free to small business owners for market research, industry benchmarking, and networking.