As I travel across the 5th District, I talk with small business owners who have sustained our local communities for generations. From Pittsylvania to Greene County, and everywhere in between, I have been inspired by the stories of so many who have built their small businesses and family farms from the ground up.
These small business owners often detail the long hours, sleepless nights, and the many risks they have taken in their pursuit of the American Dream. And increasingly in the past few years, they detail the amount of resources they have to commit just to keep up with the ever growing and changing regulations imposed by the federal government.
As our economy suffers under a nearly $16 trillion debt and minimal economic growth, it is these same small businesses and family farms that are getting hurt as a result. During a recent district workweek, I met with a local family business owner who told me that because of the economy, his business had fallen from employing over 20 to just 4. He went on to say that only two are getting paid as he held up a stack of payroll checks that he and his wife had not cashed for themselves for months.
Stories like this are what make the President's comments in Roanoke this month all the more out-of-touch. Not only did this small business owner that I talked with build his business, but he and his wife were willing to continue running the business without being paid just for the sake of keeping their employees out of the unemployment lines and hoping that the economy will improve.
The failed policies of the past three years and the constantly growing federal government have driven us to this point. And as we listened to the President's speech in Roanoke, it is no wonder we have seen so many Main Street businesses close their doors and so many in our local communities out of work. It is clear that the big government policies set forth in Washington are harming our small business owners.
That is why the House remains committed to its pro-growth agenda that reduces red tape, keeps taxes low, reduces the crushing debt, and enables small business owners to create the jobs that this country needs to get our economy back on track. Next week, we will continue our work by taking up two more pieces of legislation that are aimed at saving jobs by holding the government accountable for the costs of federal regulations.
The small business owners across the 5th District and across this country didn't just build their small businesses, they helped build the America we know today that embraces the entrepreneurial spirit and that always strives to prosper. I know that our 5th District small business owners did build their businesses and their farms and I remain committed to working on their behalf and on behalf of all 5th District Virginians to ensure that we do our best to support them as they continue to support our local communities.