Dear Friends and Neighbors,
My office has received many phone calls and emails about an effort (Senate Bill 5326) to eliminate booth rental agreements, like those used by hairdressers and stylists, who rent “booths” and are their own small business. The phone calls and emails talk about how this bill would decimate the industry and have huge impacts on single mothers and second-income families.
But why would Democrats sponsor a bill like this in the first place? Let me explain.
Small businesses in the service industry don't have to pay a business and occupation (B&O) tax if their annual revenue is less than $56,000/year, and pay a reduced amount if they make between $56,000 and $112,000/year. The sponsors of this bill want to do an “end run” around our B&O tax exemptions for small business entrepreneurs by forcing them to go to work for larger businesses that don't have the same tax incentives. But many – if not most – of these entrepreneurs are women, single mothers, and second-income earners who need the flexibility of setting their own schedules and the ability to maximize every dollar earned that they can!
In effect, this bill seeks to balance the budget, or pay for more things like the governor's billion dollar plan to save the orcas, on the backs of small business entrepreneurs making less than $56,000/year.
We have seen a tremendous grassroots effort against this bill. As of today, we're being told the portion of this bill that would affect the booth rentals has been stripped from the bill. However, we are hearing rumors of a potential House bill being sponsored, and the fact is, the original bill can be amended on the Senate floor to put the original language back in! People need to stay vigilant and engaged.
Thank you for allowing me to serve you in Olympia. If you have questions about this, or any other piece of legislation, please don't hesitate to contact me.