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Oconee Citizen Reporter: Unemployment Debacle Hurts Small Businesses

I would like to add to the story on the debacle of South Carolina’s state-run unemployment insurance system.

First of all when talking to local businesspeople, for many years they were paying from $1,200 to $2,500 a year for unemployment insurance. Then out of the blue last year they were straddled with outrageous bills of anywhere from $7,500 to $18,000.

I know this happened right at the lowest point in their business and almost put many of them out of business. I really don’t think there was a lot of thought given to what the consequences would be of these horrific sums being charged to fix this debacle by state government.

About 97 percent of all businesses in the state are small (100 employees or less). Why is it that the Legislature continues to punish the small-business person and straddle them with the high cost of government, while paying favors to the large corporation with tax breaks and incentives?

Why weren’t the business owners given a choice of hiring another person to do whatever instead of getting hit with these large unemployment insurance payments? It would have lowered unemployment, and it’s an example of some creative things they could have done instead of passing these large tax increases.

Of course, the Legislature never consulted with business owners before passing these big unemployment insurance hikes. Legislators aren’t the experts.

This is another example of our state government out of control.

Another question I have for our Legislature is why are they not standing up to the federal government and saying 99 weeks of unemployment is ridiculous? I, unfortunately, know people who are able to work who can collect more money on unemployment than going to work.

Our government is creating a whole class of dependents on the government.

I also want to say for the record that I am all for helping those in need. It is the abuse of the system that infuriates me.

Our legislators are given a job to do and that is to manage and run the state government. If they ran a business like they run government, they would either be out of business or fired.

Free enterprise works if we can just get government out of the way. The consensus of all the business owners I talk to is to get government out of their business so they can go back to running their businesses and creating profits so their families and employees can prosper.

Not a lot to ask for, is it?

Brit Adams is a Citizen Reporter for The Nerve and a businessman who lives in Oconee County.

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S.C. General Assembly unemployment insurance system