CHUCK MUTH: Pro-business pit bull to take on anti-business Legislature |

CHUCK MUTH: Pro-business pit bull to take on anti-business Legislature

Chuck Muth
For the Nevada Appeal

It’s been a bad couple of years for businesses in Nevada. And it’s about to get even worse.

Hikes in the government-mandated minimum wage are now on auto-pilot. There’s a pending proposal to double the unemployment tax on businesses. ObamaCare is resulting in higher, not lower health insurance costs for businesses and their employees. And those “temporary” tax hikes on businesses passed by the ’09 Nevada Legislature could possibly be extended or made permanent.

And that’s before the 2011 Legislature gets around to once again debating the imposition of a new gross receipts tax or other corporate income tax, not to mention expanding the sales tax to include services.

The problem for many companies and employers is that many business groups and industry lobbyists who should be fighting these anti-business government taxes, fees, regulations and red tape often feel compelled to “compromise” with those who are intent on further crippling businesses.

Indeed, the compromises agreed to by some business lobbyists resulted in 2009’s doubling of business license fees and the modified business tax.

So what Nevada businesses really need is a totally independent outside organization which won’t play those games and cut bad deals under political duress. An organization that will champion the interests of small, medium and large businesses equally.

It’s time to stop “sucking up” to anti-business legislators who are hell-bent on sucking up every last dime of private sector profits and transferring that money to the government to redistribute to others who haven’t earned it. It’s time Nevada businesses had a watchdog, not a lapdog. A pit bull, not a poodle. One not only not afraid to bite back, but ready, willing and able to bite pre-emptively.

That’s why Citizen Outreach, my non-profit grassroots advocacy organization, has created the Nevada Business Coalition (www.nevadabusinesscoalition. com).

Our intent is not to compete with or replace the chambers of commerce or trade associations or individual corporate lobbyists, but to augment their efforts and continue to fight anti-business legislation to the bitter end – even after other advocates are sidelined in the battle or forced to give up under political pressure.

The Nevada Business Coalition will also work with pro-business legislators to develop good, pro-business reform bills and publish voting records on key bills to let businesses know which legislators have been naughty and which have been nice.

Yes, the legislative deck is still stacked against Nevada’s business community, but with NBC Nevada’s businesses will have a new hole card up their sleeves.

• Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a non-profit public policy grassroots advocacy organization. He may be reached at