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Happy Holidays – Despite a New Tax Regime

In this Must Know…

Happy Holidays!

CAMEO thanks you for being a member of our network and working toward creating economic opportunity for all entrepreneurs, building wealth and strengthening California communities. We wish everyone a wonderful holiday. But we must acknowledge that the Thomas fire still burns around Santa Barbara, Ventura, and Los Angeles. It is expected to be contained by early January. Our hopes that a holiday miracle happens and everyone who is affected by the wildfires does indeed have a happy holiday season.

For last minute gifts that don’t require a trip to the mall, try these:

Despite the news coming from Washington, have a restful, peaceful, and joyous holiday!

Tax Reform Update

Congress passed the “Tax Cut and Jobs Act” (click for some “light” holiday reading). In record time, without much debate, and a lot of uncertainty of what is actually in the bill, Congress has re-written the tax code. Our DC crew at Madison Services group created this breakdown of what’s in the bill.

Our colleagues at Small Business Majority say that the tax reform won’t benefit small businesses.

This hastily drawn tax plan gives a whopping 77 percent of the pass-through reduction benefit to the top 2.6 percent of firms, meaning the likes of hedge fund managers and wealthy lawyers would be the primary beneficiaries. Indeed, the financial benefits to a pass-through entity making $500,000 are 20 times the benefits to a business making $75,000. What’s more, a priority of this legislation has been to slash corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 21 percent even though only five percent of small businesses pay corporate taxes.

The tax bill repeals the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, which will hurt the market for healthcare. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that this would “increase the number of uninsured people by 4 million in 2019 and 13 million in 2027.” The number of people who are willing to leave unsatisfying jobs to start their own businesses is thought to increase when they have access to healthcare.

Some are saying that the bill will worsen the wealth gap and increase inequality.

What small businesses wanted from tax reform was for it to be simpler and fair. We have our work cut out for us this year to make sure that this tax bill isn’t the end of reform and that inclusive entrepreneurship is encouraged, not discouraged.

And a quick update on appropriations: Congress must do something to fund the government by Friday or the government shuts down right before Christmas. House GOP Leadership plans to vote on a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the government through January 19, 2018. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) promised Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) that he would include language to bolster Obamacare insurance markets in the CR, in return for her vote for the tax bill. But the House would need to vote again and House conservatives are flatly opposed to the Obamacare fix. At this time, we’re still up in the air.

Again, repeat after me, despite the news coming from Washington, have a restful, peaceful, and joyous holiday!

The Goodies

New opportunities for training, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know. I have posted a running tab of current Industry Goodies on the CAMEO website that lists items that were in past emails. Check it out to make sure you’re not missing anything, like grants whose deadlines are still alive!

Annual Micro Census: Download the 2016 Annual Micro Census.

New Resource: The SBA’s SF District Office has launched a slack channel – The Business Support Network – that you are invited to join. Feel free to announce events and voice questions about where to send clients, how to handle specific types of businesses, find funding (for clients or yourselves), shape programming to serve business owners, and more.

LivePlan Discount: We featured LivePlan’s online business management tool at our annual meeting this year. They are offering a special End of Year LivePlan promotion for new LivePlan implementations. Email Justin Hardersen for more on the discount and setting up the product. The offer expires December 31, 2017. They are holding a webinar “Incorporating the LivePlan Method in your Center, Program or Classroom” on December 27, 2017 at 11:30am PDT.

For Your Clients: Do you know a small business owner with an amazing success story to tell? If so, submit your nomination today for the 2018 National Small Business Week Awards. All nominations must be mailed or hand delivered to the nearest SBA Office no later than 3:00 pm ET on January 9, 2018. Consult the Awards Guidelines for details.

Moving Main Street Forward: AEO’s microbusiness and microfinance conference is a must-attend event for professionals providing capital, technical assistance and other forms of trusted guidance to Main Street and microbusiness owners. The agenda will be packed with inspiring keynotes, thought-provoking plenaries and compelling breakout sessions designed to engage attendees in bold and provocative conversations on using inclusion, innovation and investment to move Main Streets across the country forward. Register at the Early Bird rate of $350 by January 15, 2018!

For Your Clients: The Specialty Food Association is offering your clients a 25% discount to attend its educational workshop, The Basics, being held at the Mission Bay Conference Center prior to the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco on January 20, 2018, 8:00am-5:00pm. The Basics offers actionable insights on the specialty food industry through sharing valuable business advice from successful industry veterans. It’s a must-attend event for anyone who is learning about the specialty food business, new to Fancy Food Shows, or looking for some fresh insights to enhance their success in the industry. With this offer, the price for The Basics is reduced from $199 to just $149. Offer good for CAMEO members and their clients only. Contact us to get the code for your clients.

New Report: The SBA Office of Advocacy released a report on the impact of microbusiness on the national economy. Microbusinesses, defined in the fact sheet as firms with 1-9 employees, are the smallest of the smalls but they are the most common type of small business and exhibit an oversized role in employment.

New Report: The fourth annual Freelancing in America study shows what many freelancers know intuitively: The freelance workforce is growing rapidly and adapting quickly in a fast-changing economy. The Freelancers Union projects that independent workers will be a majority of the U.S. workforce in just a decade.