Council on Small Business

The council is the U.S. Chamber’s principal policy committee and action group representing the issues of concern to small business.

Who we are

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is one of the world’s strongest pro-business trade associations representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses. Since its inception in 1912, the Chamber has grown to include member businesses of every size and industry disbursed geographically throughout the country.

With America’s 23 million small businesses representing more than 99% of all employers, accounting for more than half of all private sector workers, and generating three out of every four new jobs, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is firmly committed to advancing a strong small business agenda. A robust and vibrant small business community has proven vital to our nation’s long-term prosperity.

The Council on Small Business is the U.S. Chamber’s principal policy committee and action group representing the issues of concern to small business.  In addition to formulating small business policy, the council assists small business members in creating effective grass roots actions and strategies on legislative, regulatory and international initiatives.  The group is able to bring to the Board’s attention small business issues they regard as important or comment on the small business impact of policy being formulated by other Chamber standing policy committees. 

What we do

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business – especially small business. No other organization represents business as effectively before Congress, the administration, regulatory agencies, in the courts -- and in the court of public opinion. Members of the Council on Small Business routinely help shape and advance the Chamber’s message and strong pro-business agenda by a dedicated commitment and involvement in the political process.

Council members regularly meet with top federal government officials and policy makers on issues of importance to the small business community. Our expert policy staff frequently calls on the Council to testify before Congress by representing the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. At these hearings Council members are provided opportunities to relay their personal stories to lawmakers on the impact of government policies on small business and proposed solutions.

Our agenda

Through a series of meetings and forums, members of the Council on Small Business are the driving force in formulating our aggressive small business policy agenda. Our current platform includes:

  • Health Care – Improve affordable access to quality health care for small business owners and their employees.
  • Workforce Flexibility – Empower small businesses by providing a level playing field to hire, train, and retain a qualified workforce.
  • Tax Relief – Promote a tax policy that allows small business the opportunity to reinvest more money to grow their businesses.
  • Red Tape – Fight burdensome federal regulations and paperwork requirements that produce questionable benefits.
  • Legal Reform – Limit outlandish punitive damages that are crafted to force large settlements regardless of the small business’ degree of responsibility for the harm done.
  • Government Resources – Encourage the efficient use of limited resources that the government has dedicated to small businesses in its efforts to reduce regulatory barriers, provide capital, and spur economic development.
  • International Trade – Give small businesses the opportunity to participate in the worldwide marketplace with as few restrictions as their international competitors.
  • Infrastructure – Provide small businesses unfettered access to a safe, cost-effective, and reliable infrastructure that will support a stable flow of goods and services.

Visibility

Every year, the Chamber orchestrates a premier “Small Business Summit” whereby hundreds of small business owners descend on our Nation’s Capitol to inform lawmakers of the challenges facing the small business community. The action-packed agenda offers participants unique access to Washington’s most powerful small business policymakers, outstanding opportunities to learn how to improve a wide range of business operations through breakout sessions and a chance to take their messages directly to Capitol Hill.

The Council on Small Business plays an instrumental roll in planning and advising the staff at the Chamber on important components of this event in order to address pertinent issues. Furthermore, Council members are afforded a special distinction at the event.

Council structure & meeting schedule

The council maintains a roster of approximately one hundred and fifty members disbursed geographically throughout the country. The majority of the membership is comprised of small business owners whose size range from the self-employed to larger enterprises. Other members may include CEO’s or small business directors of state and local chambers of commerce, small business advocates of member associations, and small business representatives of organizations dedicated to serving the interests of small businesses. Irrespective of size or background, every member carries one vote and is considered a valuable resource to the Chamber and the Council.

Meetings of the general Council are held twice a year, usually at the Chamber headquarters in Washington, DC, in conjunction with the Chamber’s Board of Directors meetings in June and November. Additionally, the executive committee members of the Council on Small Business meet in conjunction with the winter Board meeting. The executive committee is comprised of the Chair and Vice Chair of the Council, all Council members that are former or current Chamber Directors, and others as designated by the Council Chair.

Entry onto the Council

A duly authorized Chamber representative must submit in writing to the executive director of the Council a recommendation for a candidate to obtain a seat on the Council. There is no guarantee that a candidate will in fact be invited to serve on the Council as space is limited and the Chamber must maintain a geographic, industry, and membership balance. The Chairman of the Board of Directors will have final approval of all recommendations.

Timeline

The latest updates across all U.S. Chamber properties

E.g., 04/24/2017
E.g., 04/24/2017
Letter

On January 18, 2017, the Chamber sent a letter to Congressman Chabot,  Congresswoman Velázquez, Senator Risch, and Senator Shaheen applauding the House passage of H.R. 5 which compiles several regulatory reform bills, including H.R. 55, the “Regulatory Accountability Act,” and H.R. 33, “the Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act of 2017,” and urge the Senate to expeditiously consider regulatory reform legislation.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - 9:45am
Event

National Fly-In to storm the Hill and let policymakers know that small businesses are being strangled by regulations and paperwork.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - 8:00am