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H-F Business Owners 'Optimistic' about Four More Years of Obama

Residents have considered how the re-election of President Obama is going to affect them personally, but what about business? Patch talks with several prominent local business owners to get their take on things.

All across the country, Americans are reacting to the news of President Obama’s reelection.  While many are concerned about how the decision will affect them individually, thousands of local business owners are contemplating how four more years of an Obama administration might affect their efforts.

To find out more, Patch asked around among the H-F business community get their take on it. Days after the election, the feedback is pretty optimistic.

Larry Kane of Flossmoor owns Jonathan Kane Salon & Spa. Kane says his relatively new business has already seen a double-digit increase since opening in Feb. of 2010. A similar increase is expected this year, he says. Jonathan Kane has also grown from a humble seven original employees to the current 21.

“The whole doom and gloom thing people thought Obama was going to bring never happened to us,” Kane said. “I’m optimistic because we’ve persevered three of the last four years Obama’s been in office.”

Still, Kane says he’s interested to see what lies ahead for small business legislation. Kane says regardless of what's to come, his business will continue to rely on its current strengths for success.

“We struggle with (taxes) … but most of that is more local than federal,” Kane said. “Our best defense is a good offense.”

Aurelio’s pizza owner Joe Aurelio is of a similar, proactive mindset. He says he was more or less expecting an Obama victory.

“We’re still trying to make the best pizza we can,” Aurelio said. “I’m optimistic, but still concerned.”

Among Aurelio’s concerns is the president’s proposed health care initiative. With 140 employees compared to Jonathan Kane’s 21, the outcome of this national issue may have a significant impact on the beloved local pizza business.

“If I have to contribute to health care for 140 people, we’re going to have to look for (ways to make up the costs),” Aurelio said.

Despite concerns, however, Aurelio says he’s hopeful a reasonable plan will be drafted through bipartisan efforts.

AAA Rental owner and Homewood Trustee Jay Heiferman makes up for any lack of confidence in the other two. He thinks America's economy is in an upswing and it will remain resilient regardless of the presidential outcome.

Heiferman is of the opinion that America's economy is in an upswing and that it will remain resilient regardless  of the presidents contributions or detractions. 

"This county would be in good shape regardless of who won."

What’s your opinion? Does Obama’s reelection bring along cautious optimism as some local business owners are suggesting or is there an unforseen storm on the horizon? Tell us in the comments.

Linda T November 09, 2012 at 02:07 PM
There's only so much the government can control. On the other hand, without cooperation and compromise between the parties, we're screwed. There are moderates and extremists on both sides of the aisle, and if they can work together for solutions there's a better chance life will be better. I do feel Obama's re-election improves the odds of that happening. There's no way to know if that could have happened with a Romney win, but I suspect it would have been possible in that instance too. The majority of folks I know aren't extremists, are tired of the lack of compromise and cooperation, and expect, and I hope will demand cooperation. Both sides have valid ideas and concerns. I do feel campaign finance reform, and working towards a Constitutional amendment to get rid of Citizens' United is vital. Big Oil, Big Pharma, and other multinational corporate interests have way too much control over government and policy.
James Tiernan November 09, 2012 at 02:24 PM
I am anxious about taxes and the bulging federal deficit. We can expect the divided Congress to battle over President Obama's request to raise the top tax rate on many business owners to 39.6 percent during 2013. That's the highest personal tax rate, and it affects some small businesses because their owners report their business taxes on their personal returns. He is proposing tax cuts that will benefit many small companies i.e. the corporate tax rate to drop to 28 percent from its current 35 percent and backing more liberal tax deductions for small businesses that invest in new equipment. Key provisions include the requirement that businesses with 50 or more employees provide affordable health insurance for their workers. What employers don't know yet is how much that insurance will cost. That won't be determined until states set up exchanges where individuals and companies can buy coverage. Small business owners are likely to find ways to get around them. Some owners reluctant to buy health insurance for employees will make sure their companies don't have the equivalent of 50 full-time workers -- the threshold at which they'd have to provide coverage under the health care law. Our health insurance clients are readying for a rough road. Locally speaking . . . Cook County taxes on Commercial Property are usurious. 10 years ago mine were $23,000 on my office building on Flossmoor Road and now we are home--based.
Rick Walter November 09, 2012 at 04:58 PM
I agree the Jonathan Kane growth and optimism is great, but as mentioned, there's only 21 employees. Once 50 is reached, that bottom line will be hit hard with the requirement to provide insurance to all employees. To me, that's a way to stunt economic growth if a small business decides to hover below 50 employees. No money growth, no hiring growth, bad news.
Genvieve LaChappele November 09, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Don't forget big unions!
Juvenal November 11, 2012 at 03:20 PM
Of course Kane wouldn't mind; In the brave new America pretty much the only private sector businesses left will be hair salons, nail salons, currency exchanges, and mini marts.

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