Your Opinion: Confusing federal rules confound grocers

Dear Editor:

Each year, my fellow grocers and I take a trip to Washington to meet with our elected officials in Congress who serve the citizens of Missouri. This year the topic at the forefront of our discussion was how the federal regulatory process in Washington is negatively impacting our industry’s ability to plan and invest. Our message was clear — complying with costly, outmoded and duplicative mandates handed down from dozens of federal regulatory agencies has become an increasing burden on Missouri businesses.

When our members met in Washington last week, they spoke with one voice on the need for reforms in Washington that enable small businesses to grow and expand. As long as onerous new rules with little benefits are added to the current broken system, Missouri businesses and their workers will spend time and resources away from expanding their business.

Increasingly federal regulations are confusing, contradictory and add odds with other rules already on the books at the state or federal level. With more than 3,300 regulations in the pipeline and nearly 750 proposed rules in the first three months of 2014 alone, it’s time we consider the direct correlation between this burden and local economies.

Small businesses are often referred to as the engine of job growth in our economy. It’s time to clear roadblocks and modernize the regulatory process so that federal mandates can ensure protections without stifling needed investment.