Members of the International Franchise Association joined Senate Majority

Members of the International Franchise Association joined Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) for a press conference yesterday to discuss burdens that policies being pushed by some Democrats and the administration are placing on franchise businesses’ ability to sell more franchises, hire workers and grow the economy. 

“Franchise small businesses need government to get out of the way in order to continue creating jobs at the rate they have historically,” said IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira. “We applaud Senate Minority Leader McConnell for echoing that message and urge the administration and all members of Congress to develop bipartisan, pro-growth solutions that help franchise businesses to create jobs.”

“The government itself is the problem now,” said McConnell. “We have to allow  the private sector to do what it does best which is to to grow, expand, and create jobs.”

“In recent years, one of the reasons I have not sought to grow is uncertainty surrounding the health care laws,” said David Barr, Chairman of PMTD Restaurants LLC and its affiliates (a franchisee of KFC and Taco Bell) and Rita Restaurant Corp. (the owner and operator of Don Pablo’s Mexican Restaurants). “Obamacare will force me to either decrease employees or move workers from full-time to part-time employees to avoid paying penalties.”

Unless Congress repeals or significantly changes the health care law, 3.2 million full-time employees and tens of thousands of franchise businesses will be at risk of losing their jobs, according to a recent report prepared by Hudson Institute for the International Franchise Association.

“All of my business income is needed to continue to grow and create jobs,” said Gail Johnson, CEO of Rainbow Station, which is a franchise that offers nationally accredited early childhood education and school age recreation programs. “Taking away income from small business owners like myself  through a tax increase is quite simply  a job smasher.”

IFA has urged Congress to consider permanent, comprehensive tax reforms that encourage job creation by franchise businesses, but that also do not hurt small businesses and franchises that file as individuals. Click here to view IFA’s recent letter to Senators.  

“Small businesses that want to grow and have a track record of success should be able to get loans from lenders, said Bob Dorfman, a Five Guys multi-unit franchisee with 9 stores in Tampa, Fla., 10 stores in Columbus, Ohio, 14 stores open in Houston and South Texas, and a commitment with Five Guys to open and operate 103 total stores. “Lenders should be free from overregulation and scrutiny that’s unnecessarily holding back job creation.

Over 82,000 new jobs and over $10 billion in economic output will be lost in 2011 as a result of lack of credit flow to franchised small businesses, according to the IFA Small Business Lending Matrix & Analysis, Vol. 3.

“We have heard today that the rules and the regulations coming out of Washington are making it harder and more expensive for the private sector to create jobs,” said Barrasso.

“Let’s listen to the job creators and create an environment where they can go out and Americans can do what they have done better than anyone in the history of the world,” said Rubio. “They haven’t forgotten how to go out and start a business. These people haven’t run out of good ideas. They just need a government that makes it easier for them to go out and do that and not harder.”

Posted by Matt Haller, IFA Sr. Director of Communications

Back home, lawmakers hear from small business owners


Link: Back home, lawmakers hear from small business owners

With the August congressional recess in full-swing, franchise businesses across the country have an opportunity to voice their concerns with lawmakers about critical issues facing the industry.

This morning’s Washington Post focuses on the contrasting views of Reps. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-Mo.) and his colleague, freshman Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.). Both lawmakers opposed the debt-ceiling increase, and now face voters and small business owners in Kansas City eager for progress on issues they feel are more in-line with the challenges and decisions they face every day. Consider this excerpt from the article regarding how out of touch some policymakers have been on issues affecting small business owners like many IFA members, such as the challenges posed by the current small business lending environment, taxes and the costs of the health care law. 

For his first event since the vote, Yoder gathered a small group of business people at Gates Bar-B-Q, in one of the poorer parts of his district. Owner George Gates worried that the provisions of the health care bill will force him to lay off employees. Valerie Mussett said if the government were like her business, there would simply be cuts across the board.

That was the dominant theme as Yoder moved around his district, which stretches from Democratic-leaning downtown Kansas City, Kan., to the liberal academic community around the University of Kansas in Lawrence, his alma mater. But most voters live in Johnson County, a Republican-dominated place that is home to Kansas’s priciest neighborhoods, best schools and a clutch of corporate headquarters, including Sprint and Applebee’s.

Read the full article on The Washington Post Web site

Posted by Matt Haller, IFA Director of Communications

This morning on the CBS Earl

This morning on the CBS Early Show, Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) told host Erica Hill House Republicans are working on a program to get Americans back to work and the importance of getting small business owners and entrepreneurs “back in the game.”

IFA agrees. In fact, last month, we sent all members of Congress our “Solutions for the Economy” – a four-step program for helping franchise small businesses create jobs. 

“IFA supports public policies that encourage economic recovery and job growth in the franchise business community, said IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira in announcing the IFA’s program. “These include initiatives that increase small business access to credit, eliminate tax uncertainties, reduce the cost of health insurance and support veterans and minorities as small franchise business owners.”

Posted by Matt Haller, IFA Director of Communications

A report from the Atlanta ‘Startup America’ White House initiative


Yesterday I attended the Startup America – Reducing Barriers Roundtable session in Atlanta, GA.  Startup America is a White House initiative to celebrate, inspire, and accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship throughout the nation to identify barriers and recommend solutions to the financial, legal, regulative and people issues that are discouraging business start ups or growth in existing small business.  

This is an excellent opportunity to speak directly to members of the Obama administration about the IFA’s “Solutions for the Economy” – which lays out exactly what needs to be done to get business growing again, including initiatives that increase small business access to credit, eliminate tax uncertainties, reduce the cost of health insurance and support veterans and minorities as small franchise business owners

I encourage all franchisors, franchisees and suppliers who can attend the remaining two meetings to do so.  At the conclusion of the round tables a complete report with recommended solutions on what the government can do to spur business growth will be delivered to the President.

There have been a total of six roundtables held to date with two remaining in Boulder, CO and Silicon Valley, CA in the next two weeks.  You can find out more about Startup America and log your ideas at

If you have any questions feel free to contact me at or contact IFA’s Director of Advocacy, Meredith Nethercutt, at

Posted by Dave McDougall, CFE, Managing Partner, FranIntel

Are You a Franchise Congress Candidate?


Through IFA’s Franchise Congress initiative, select franchisors, franchisees and suppliers, well educated and motivated on political issues affecting the franchise community, are able to make their voices heard by communicating with elected officials.

In its recruitment of new members, IFA is looking for anyone in the franchise community who is interested in cultivating and maintaining a relationship with their member(s) of Congress, as well as making contact on key franchise issues.

Do you have a personal relationship with a member of Congress?
Are you comfortable speaking on behalf of the franchise industry on issues like health care reform, union card check and access to credit for small businesses?
Would you be willing to invite your member of Congress to come to your franchise for a site visit?
Are you involved in local or national election activities?

Stacey Goertz, Mr. Rooter of Greater Houston, hosts Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) at her franchise business. 

If you answered “yes” to any or all of these questions, you could be a great candidate. To get involved, contact Meredith Nethercutt at or 202-662-0760 today.