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A Small Business Owner On Trump's Plans For Small Businesses


Slashing red tape was one of Donald Trump's campaign promises. As president, he has made good on that promise, signing an executive order this past week that will mean for every new regulation put into law, two regulations will be slashed. And as he signed that order, President Trump was surrounded by small business owners who'd been invited to the White House for a listening session with Trump.

Joy Weatherup Anthis was one of them. She owns JWA Construction Management in DeWitt, N.Y., and she joins us from DeWitt this morning. Hi.


GARCIA-NAVARRO: Very well. So tell me a little bit about your business.

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: We're a construction management services company. We make sure that the general contractors and subcontractors on a project stay within budget and time constraints and schedules. And we're their eyes and ears basically.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: How have federal regulations affected you?

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: You know, they - the problem with federal regulations are there are ones that are necessary in our industry - in the construction industry for standards of construction of anything, from concrete to support beams and things like that. But the unnecessary ones are the ones that bog us down.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: So is it that there are too many regulations or that they're too complicated - or both?

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: I think it's both. If there was one regulation in the process that we would be able to somehow get through it, but there's one on top of the other on top of the other. You feel like you've gotten to the end of the requirement, and then there's - oh, by the way, one more thing to do, which, frankly, is what the president, I believe, is trying to do - is to make only the regulations that are in place essential regulations.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: You talked about that there are some good regulations that need to be protected. How do you make sure that those regulations stay in place and they don't get jettisoned along with some of the other stuff?

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: Honestly, I'm not sure. I'm not familiar enough about what the people on Capitol Hill have to do when they go through the process. My hope is that the ones that are very, very important to the health and safety of our general public are the ones that stay and then they bring forward new ones that help our economy. So my hope is when they throw away two to bring forward one, that the two are some of the inconsequential, difficult, non-essential regulations that have been really hindering us.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: You know, the creation of new U.S. businesses has actually climbed steadily since 2010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. And that runs counter to the narrative from the Trump administration that small businesses, medium-sized businesses have been stifled - or were stifled under the Obama administration.

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: They may have grown. But as you know, as well as I do, statistics can be manipulated. How fast have they grown? Have they grown to their potential? Have they grown enough? And it's not that I don't believe those numbers that they have grown steadily. And I'm hoping that some of the things that President Trump will put in place, such as the tax reform and the regulatory issues, will speed up whatever steady gain it has been said that we've made since 2010.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Joy Weatherup Anthis, small business owner from DeWitt, N.Y., thanks so much for being with us.

WEATHERUP ANTHIS: My pleasure. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.