Hawaiʻi residents would like to see legislative support for small businesses struggling due to the pandemic, according to a recent survey of 625 people conducted by the Hawaiʻi Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
The “Peopleʻs Pulse Survey,” in partnership with OmniTrak and with the support of Central Pacific Bank Foundation, highlights the urgency of helping businesses through this extremely difficult time, Chamber President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara said in a newsletter to members.
“This is why any actions that will undermine recovery efforts will chip away at the limited lifelines currently available to our local business community,” she wrote.
Highlights from the survey:
- 98 percent of Hawaiʻi residents say small business is important to Hawaiʻi, with 88 percent stating it is very important. (This level of “very important” is rarely seen in Hawaiʻi, according to Menor-McNamara).
- 97 percent support action by the current Legislature to help keep small businesses open and their workforce employed with 8 in 10 saying it is “very important.”
- 95 percent agree the Legislature should focus on getting the economy back on track and people back to work, with 75 percent strongly agreeing. Only 5 percent disagree that economic recovery should be the Legislature’s priority.
- 86 percent of residents agree that this is not the time for the Legislature to increase mandates on small business, with 48 percent strongly agreeing and 14 percent disagreeing.
In a Chamber of Commerce small business survey of members, 85 percent of business executives said it was important to decrease regulations on small business, with two-thirds indicating this is extremely important for economic recovery.
The legislative session is at the halfway mark.
On the federal front, according to the US Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship, The American Rescue Plan Act provides overdue aid to small businesses in the hardest-hit communities and sectors.
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