Washington — House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (MO-08) released the following statement after the producer price index showed wholesale prices rose 4.6 percent from a year earlier:
“Main Street businesses are still being forced to pay 4.6 percent more for goods than a year ago, leading to higher prices for families under President Biden’s failed economic policies, and under the president’s latest budget proposal, they face ahead of $1.8 trillion in tax increases. Democrats are threatening a new small business surtax increase of $650 billion on small owner-operated businesses, $77 billion in death taxes that will destroy family farms, ranches and other generational businesses, and a new increase of 37 billion dollar of the tax on energy producers, which will increase energy prices even more.
“Hasn’t small business been through enough? Appearing before a recent Ways and Means hearing in Yukon, Oklahoma, small business owners shared their struggles in the Biden economy between labor shortages, higher energy costs and a supply chain crisis. House Republicans put those voices first in crafting our economic policies — while the White House ignores them in favor of brutal new taxes to fund more welfare for the rich.
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In Their Own Words: Oklahoma and Small Business Owners
Witnesses at a recent Ways and Means Committee hearing in Yukon, Okla., shared their struggles in President Biden’s economy:
Brian JacksonArmy veteran who won the Iraq Distinguished Service Cross and started a meat processing company in 2020:
“Today we face an increasingly challenging work environment where employees may or may not show up for work. As a result, our ability to complete the work we undertake as a service company is hampered…
“The beef industry as a whole is in a difficult situation. There is not much profitability for a breeder because the cost of fertilizers and feed is too high….We would be more profitable if we could process at a lower cost.”
Kelly Paynefifth-generation farmer and rancher from Mustang, Oklahoma, and vice president of the North Central District of the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association:
“Struggles with drought are exacerbated by high costs of inputs, including fuel, feed and other supplies. All of these negative impacts have caused some breeders to sell off their entire herd and many have indicated that they will not be restocking anytime soon, if at all..”
“We have enough challenges with mother nature; let’s not compound the problem with more regulations.”
Chuck Millsowner and operator of the family-owned machinery manufacturing company founded in Oklahoma in 1908:
“Labor shortages and supply chain issues combined with inflationary pressures have made this the toughest economy I’ve faced in over four decades.”
“In January 2021, our raw materials increased by 25%. The following month, prices rose again by 15%, and the following month they jumped again by 20%. These significant price increases of 10% – 25% lasted for eight months. At this point our vendors told us to just call to get the current rates.”
“All I’m asking is that Congress allow me to continue running this family business so I can pass it on to the next generation. Sincerely, please encourage able-bodied Americans to return to the workforce. Please do not raise tax rates, which would further restrict our cash flow. Please don’t make it difficult for me to stay in business here in Oklahoma.”
Joe Brevettiowner and founder of an oil well drilling company in Oklahoma:
“We don’t want special treatment. We simply want a level playing field to encourage investment. Onerous regulations and increased taxes on oil and natural gas production hinder the ability of companies like ours to put Americans to work and provide affordable energy to families across the country. Runaway inflation has hit all Americans very hard, including us independent oil and gas producers.
“Let’s stop going down the same anti-hydrocarbon path that is wreaking havoc in Europe.” This is our wake-up call. We don’t want that kind of America! America needs more energy, not less. More energy for America equals more prosperity for all Americans.