Founder and CEO of the Small Business Advocacy Council, Elliot Richardson, was featured on The Sunday Spin: Politics with Rick Pearson Sunday, December 4. Richardson and Pearson discuss what the fall veto session outcome means for the small business community and the state. The full WGN radio show is available to listen to here.
On the show, Richardson emphasizes how the budget impasse is negatively impacting people in Illinois, especially small business owners. “[The budget impasse] is making it very difficult for small business owners to make decisions,” he says. “It’s impacting their clients and their customers, whether they are nonprofits or other companies that are talking about leaving the state. This uncertainty cripples and paralyzes small businesses.”
Richardson also stresses that the state of Illinois is falling deeper into debt every day because our politicians in Springfield cannot come to commonsense resolutions. “It’s mind-boggling,” he says. “It needs to change.”
To jump start change, Richardson calls for a groundswell of grassroots support. He believes that we must put pressure on rank and file legislators. “We need to make the masses more important to them than leadership because it does not seem that leadership on either side is listening,” he says.
Richardson points out that commonsense proposals and compromises exist. “There are laws and proposals that are floating. We just need somebody, some brave leader to grab it and start pushing it,” he says.
Pearson and Richardson also discuss the large amount of money spent on advertising in political races across Illinois. Pearson asks, how a law maker could stand up against the money and resources of state leadership? “There is one thing that can trump money, and that’s people,” Richardson replies. “It’s going to take a groundswell of people rising up and saying ‘solve this problem’ to end this unprecedented budget impasse.”
Richardson believes the leadership is focused too much on the politics and not enough on problem solving. “People are getting hurt. This state is not a political pawn, the people in it are not political pawns, and our leaders need to start doing the right thing,” he says.
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