Promoting a positive business environment is a critical responsibility of our Government. When businesses prosper they create more jobs and reduce the strain on government resources through reduction in payouts for unemployment benefits and welfare benefits. Prospering businesses also increase government coffers through their own taxes as well as the employee taxes created by added jobs.
When business suffer government resources become strained at the same time that taxable income is going down. Without a sound and prosperous business environment, government lacks the resources to tackle important issues such as education, affordable housing and research into alternative energy. We must make the needs of our businesses, especially our small businesses, a top priority of Government.
During my two decades of operating my own independent law firm, I experienced first hand the challenges and travails faced by small business owners. All four of my children have owned successful small business, three of them in Hawaii. My youngest son, Greg Thielen, has been recognized as having one of the fastest growing businesses in the State for two years running and was one of Pacific Business News' class of Forty under 40 in 2006. We are a family of entrepreneurs who understand the commitment and effort made by small business owners through out our state and country. This real life experience has taught me practical lessons that I have employed in my 20 years of legislative experience.
Every year that I have been in office, I have received either the highest or second highest ranking given out by Small Business Hawaii. I am a recipient of Small Business Hawaii's Legislator of the Year Award. I have earned these honors by consistently voting in favor of small business measures to slash government bureaucracy, provide regulatory relief, cut taxes and promote a business friendly environment.