To Tell The Truth

Myth #5

The government is against you.

Reality: Meet Jere Glover. And just try to hate him. We dare you. He's a rare one in life--even rarer in the government. Glover is a nice guy. Fortunately and indubitably, he's also on your side. The head of the SBA's Office of Advocacy does just what Webster's says an advocate should do: He pleads another's cause. "Usually, small-business owners come to us because they've heard we're the part of the government that will help them," Glover says. "They're often desperate--a rule or regulation or law is about to adversely affect their business. We analyze it and try to do whatever we can to help."

Glover doesn't categorically deny the government can, at times, be your arch enemy. But when the line is drawn, the Office of Advocacy has proven its small-business blood is thicker than government water. In fact, the office recently demonstrated its ability to play hardball, filing an amicus brief in a government proceeding. "We went to court on behalf of small business against another federal agency," says Glover. "It's the first time the office has ever done that."

Although Glover is a government icon, he is no dispenser of red tape. He has slaved over numerous environmental rules and regulations to try to reduce the burden on small business. "I don't think government officials are against small business. They just have other priorities or don't understand it," Glover says. "Our job is basically to help them understand the implications of what they're doing and how they impact small business." So go ahead--ask what your government can do for you.

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