I have managed our business, New England Ice Cream for the past ten years in Taunton. No elected official has ever reached out to me about how to reduce the government burden on our business until State Representative Shaunna O’Connell.
Not only am I a local business operator, but I am also the President of the Massachusetts Vending Machine Association. Two years ago I took our business in a different direction and cut the vending machine sector because regulations were making it too tough to earn a profit. If I had known at that time I was going to have an ally like Shaunna O’Connell at the State House, I might have made a different decision.
Unfortunately, there are far too many people at the State House and within state government who believe business is the goose that laid the golden egg. This year when I learned that Governor Patrick wanted to increase vending machine fees by 567%, I was thankful that I had cut the vending machine side of my business. That increase is too much for any business to absorb. While some people will say that the fee increasing from $3 to $20 is no big burden, they are not looking at the real numbers. Many vending business operators own 1,000 machines, so that means their fees have gone from $3,000 annually to $20,000. That hurts and it stops a business from growing.
Rep. O’Connell stepped in to help by passing an amendment to cap the fees. No one asked her to do it. She found about the situation and went to work on it. That’s what leaders do.
With Rep. O’Connell fighting for us at the State House, I see hope for creating a better business climate in Massachusetts. She knows that it is the uncertainty, the anti-business attitude, and all the regulations, fees and taxes holding back our state from creating more jobs.
As an Easton resident and Taunton businessman, I urge voters in Easton and Taunton to support the State Representative focused on job creation, and that is Shaunna O’Connell.
Bob Frotten, President
New England Ice Cream
Myles Standish Industrial Park
Taunton, MA 02780