CHICAGO -- The National Automatic Merchandising Association is stepping up its role as an advocate for small business. In a letter sent to leaders on Capitol Hill, NAMA emphasized the importance of ensuring small business interests are protected when drafting federal regulations.
The vending association's position was addressed to Rep. Dave Schweikert (R-AZ), who chairs the Small Business Subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight and Regulations, for a recent hearing on the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The RFA was enacted more than 30 years ago to force agencies to take into account the impact of their regulations on small businesses.
In the letter submitted for the hearing record, NAMA president and chief executive Carla Balakgie wrote:
"NAMA is the leading voice of the $42 billion vending and refreshment services industry. Founded in 1936, NAMA is comprised of over 1.700 industry suppliers, operators, equipment manufacturers and service providers, including many of the world's most recognized brands. The vending and refreshment services industry provides jobs for more than 700,000 hardworking Americans. NAMA members also include many small, multi-generational family-owned businesses, with three or fewer employees.
"Due to the large number of these small enterprises," Balakgie continued, "it is important for the federal government to apply principles of flexibility and awareness when issuing regulations that affect our industry. The RFA provides this flexibility and awareness by requiring agencies to consider the impact of their regulatory proposals, and to to analyze alternatives that minimize the impact of regulations on small business. Also, by allowing public comment, small business people are given the opportunity for input regarding the effects the proposed regulations could have on their operations."