Get All Access for $5/mo

Jobs Bill Breakup: What Will Entrepreneurs Push For? The Senate spiked President Barack Obama's American Jobs Act. Now the question is: What may be salvaged from the bill that could still help small business?

By Carol Tice Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

How to Take Your Business to the Next LevelLate yesterday, the Senate spiked President Barack Obama's American Jobs Act. OK, that part was totally expected.

Without getting off-track wondering why the President squandered political capital by putting up a bill that seemed clearly doomed, let's cut right to the topic that matters: What may be salvaged out of this bill, and what would small business owners like to see actually pass?

President Obama has already said the next step is to break the bill up into parts and try to get various provisions approved by Congress. So now, like the zombie-movie posters say, it's a question of who will survive and what will be left of them.

Here's a rundown on the bill's provisions aimed at small business:

  • The payroll tax cut. This one offers real, immediate relief to business owners with employees. No help for solopreneurs there. Maybe this one was written too broadly --- it covers the first $5 million in payroll, namely 98 percent of all American businesses. Maybe it would be more palatable (and less costly) if it were scaled back to the first $1 million of payroll?
  • Zero payroll tax for new workers and pay raises. This hits directly at stimulating hiring. Isn't that what we all want? But maybe it's an empty promise if there aren't any customers or income growth stimulating owners to hire anyway.
  • Extension of 100 percent expensing of purchases. Estimated to keep $85 billion in the hands of business owners. Could be a real boon to the auto and industrial-equipment industries.
  • SBA expansion, red tape reduction. The new initiative would have allowed the Small Business Administration to continue to guarantee the larger loan limits that were authorized under last year's small-business jobs bill. It would have also cut some of the regulatory red tape small businesses face.

The big BUT:

Can taxing the rich fly? The whole bill depended on a new income tax for millionaires of 5.6 percent starting in 2013. Proposed by Senate Democrats, the surtax received only mixed support. But without a means to pay for the other cuts, the entire idea of new federal job stimulus may be dead anyway.

Maybe the small-business initiatives could be spun off into their own bill. Other provisions currently in the Jobs bill include: added financial support for states that could help prevent 280,000 teacher layoffs, infrastructure-repair programs, public-school modernization and extending unemployment.

There's so much going on in the bill overall that separating out the small business side might boost the bill's chances for passing.

Or, maybe a whole new proposal needs to be hammered out. The President recently received a plethora of feedback from entrepreneurs. Maybe his team could read through them and get some new ideas.

What do you think could save the Jobs bill? Tell us in the comments.

Carol Tice

Owner of Make a Living Writing

Carol Tice, a freelance writer, is chief executive of TiceWrites Inc. in Bainbridge Island, Wash. She blogs about freelance writing at Make a Living Writing. Email her at

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Side Hustle

This Former Disney Princess Lived 'Paycheck to Paycheck' Before Starting a Side Hustle at Home — Now She Makes $250,000 a Year

Victoria Carroll's income was "sporadic" until a friend encouraged her to take her talents to Fiverr in 2018.

Business Ideas

63 Small Business Ideas to Start in 2024

We put together a list of the best, most profitable small business ideas for entrepreneurs to pursue in 2024.

Growing a Business

Beware of These Risky Sales Tactics That Are Doomed to Fail or Backfire

Every business owner can learn from the failed sales tactics of a defeated car salesman. Know what they are to avoid losing your sale.

Business News

Here's What Sora, OpenAI's Text-to-Video Creator, Can Really Do

Toys "R" Us used Sora, an AI filmmaker, to create its latest ad.

Business News

This Major U.S. Metropolis Is Requiring All City Employees to Work In-Office 5 Days a Week

Philadelphia is the first city to implement the five-day-a-week in-office mandate. It went into effect on Monday.

Business News

Can ChatGPT Help Start a Business? I Tried the Latest Version, GPT-4o, to Find Out.

I tried ChatGPT for business advice, from the perspective of a first-time founder looking for ideas and guidance.