Duane Lester has a story about how tough it is to start a business in San Francisco.
The New York Times (yes, that one) has an article about an ice cream parlor in San Francisco that almost wasn’t. The journey from idea to reality was one filled with red tape and over $30,000 in fees.
But small business is a priority in San Francisco:
The Ice Cream Bar opened Jan. 21 in the Cole Valley neighborhood — an homage to the classic parlors of the 1930s, complete with vintage soda fountain and lunch counter seating. It has become an immediate sensation, packed with both families and the foodie crowd, savoring upscale house-made ice creams and exotic sodas (flavorings include pink peppercorn and tobacco). The shop also employs 14 full- and part-time workers.
But getting it opened wasn’t easy.
“Many times it almost didn’t happen,” said Juliet Pries, the owner, with a cheerful laugh.
Ms. Pries said it took two years to open the restaurant, due largely to the city’s morass of permits, procedures and approvals required to start a small business. While waiting for permission to operate, she still had to pay rent and other costs, going deeper into debt each passing month without knowing for sure if she would ever be allowed to open.
“It’s just a huge risk,” she said, noting that the financing came from family and friends, not a bank. “At several points you wonder if you should just walk away and take the loss.”
Ms. Pries said she had to endure months of runaround and pay a lawyer to determine whether her location (a former grocery, vacant for years) was eligible to become a restaurant. There were permit fees of $20,000; a demand that she create a detailed map of all existing area businesses (the city didn’t have one); and an $11,000 charge just to turn on the water.
Simply unbelievable isn’t it? Cities need businesses to grow and prosper, they need the sales tax revenues, yet, some cities seem intent on making it nearly impossible to start, or expand a business. It ought to be common sense for city councils, and mayors to realize that making it easier, and less expensive to start a business will be far more beneficial for that city, and yes, the city’s revenues.
Yet, the desire to micro-manage is inherent in the Liberal mind, and make no mistake, that desire plays a big part in this process. Another contributing factor is incompetence that infests every layer of government. The third factor is greed. Make no mistake, the Left is greedy, greedy for your money, no matter where it comes from. The fees, in this story topped $30,000. Why? Certainly some licenses might be perfectly reasonable, but how many people might not start a new business because of all those fees. They might also pack up their dreams, and open a business in a neighboring town if that town is more business friendly.
Rule #1 for government, be it city, county, state or federal, is this. If you want economic growth, do not kick businesses in the groin with regs and taxes. Will the Left ever learn this rule? Of course not. They are addicted to their failed ideals, which is why they are Leftists.