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Microbusinesses Hit The Big Time

A new trade group promises to give tiny businesses a loud voice.

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This being a democracy in which the most votes (usually) win, it’s not shocking that politicians tend to ignore the micro-minority. “The littlest of the little guys don’t have a political voice, but they have big needs,” says Greg Bashaw, who co-founded the four-month-old Colorado MicroBusiness Alliance (CMBA), a Centennial-based organization that seeks to give the more than 400,000 Colorado companies with 10 or fewer employees a megaphone. For one thing, microbusinesses wouldn’t mind a simpler sales tax process. Right now it’s left up to local governments, which means different forms and procedures depending on where products are bought. That’s the kind of red tape that can strangle a craftsman selling at markets and fairs. Bashaw, a former deputy legislative counsel in Nevada, is one of the group’s lobbyists and commissions outside help when needed. The CMBA will also leverage its numbers to garner greater buying power on everything from office supplies to health insurance and will organize seminars on topics such as tax liability. About 100 microbusinesses have signed on, though Bashaw hopes 20,000 will eventually pay the $5 monthly dues. That would generate the kitty the CMBA needs to tackle Colorado’s fat cats.

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