Letters to the Editor – Dec. 5, 2013

Federal regulatory process hurts small businesses

Dear Editor:

The process that federal regulations go through from proposal to enactment is simply baffling.  There are seemingly countless comment periods, public hearings and reviews.  Keeping up with the process is simply impossible for any small business in Montana.  But with 739 regulations that directly affect small businesses under consideration by various federal agencies, it’s a process that Montana small businesses can ill afford to miss.

When a regulation goes into effect, it’s in effect for everyone, from the largest conglomerate down to the mom and pop corner store.  With teams of lobbyists and lawyers, big businesses can have a great deal of influence on how a new regulation is crafted.  They have a voice in the process, but more often than not small businesses do not.  And what’s best for a large organization isn’t always good for a small one.

In my northwest corner of the Treasure State, regulations from federal agencies like the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service and the EPA have had a devastating impact on what once was a thriving economy based on natural resources. Too often in the world of mining permits, rules get changed and goal posts get moved in the middle of the game—leaving businesses to cope with the losses that result.

Increasing the transparency and accountability of the regulatory process, formalizing the types of objective data to be used in the analysis and development of regulations, and studying the unique impacts that a regulation might have on smaller business are all reforms that would go a long way to improving the situation of Montana’s small businesses.

There’s a growing sentiment in Washington for real regulatory reform.  Let’s all encourage our Montana congressional delegation to get involved as early advocates for small business.


Rep. Mike Cuffe, HD 2

Montana State Legislature


Time running out to keep Sheridan doctor

Dear Editor,

I am writing a letter of my concern for our Dr. Kelli Christensen who is the doctor for the Community Health Center in Sheridan, which is connected to the Community Health Center in Butte. Dr. Kelli has been such a great addition as a health care provider to many of us here and we have been hearing that due to problems with the administration we may be losing this dear lady. I want to encourage everyone in Sheridan to stand up for and fight to keep her. She has helped us so much. Please get informed about this situation and find out what each person can do to keep her. If anyone knows about signing petitions or whatever it takes to get this situation off the back burner and into the public eye please, lets find out what to do about this. Thanks and please be concerned as we are running out of time.

Sue Funk

Sheridan, Montana

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