Thursday, June 21, 2012

Supreme Court Health Reform

It is expected that the Supreme Court will be deciding the fate of  the Health Reform  Law in the next week.  The Supreme Court could overturn the entire  law or pick pieces of it to invalidate. The individual mandate is the one people have been focusing on but there are other issues including whether the striking down of one piece of the law  invalidates the rest of the Bill and what happens with Medicaid.

I find it amazing that with all the discussion on the bill no one brought up the issue of severability.
See below a very good piece by Kaiser with FAQs.
Small Business needs to understand this bill and how it will affect them.

See below

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116


Yesterday I met with a small business owner who has been audited by EDD and had a number of their  independent contractors reclassified as employees. This person is not one of those people who is flagrantly misclassifying  people but has really tried to comply with the law.  She has gone through workers compensation audits and they have agreed with her that they are independent contractors.
She hired an attorney to draw up her contract and is appealing the decision. They are saying she owes $75000. She also will probably have EDD report to IRS which could cause more problems.
FYI there is an amnesty in effect with IRS. Her advice to small businesses is if you are not entirely sure that people meet the independent contractor status classify them as employees.

Yesterday I went to a seminar on ADA. Many of you are aware of the lawsuits being filed against small businesses by attorneys looking to collect money from them under ADA and state ADA laws. The most interesting thing I heard at the seminar is that Charles Schwab lost a lawsuit against them because their website was not ADA compliant. One more thing to worry about.

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116

Monday, June 18, 2012

News Release: Doing Business in California Just Got Easier with eReg

Please see below news release from the Board of Equalization on their new Electronic Registration program.In my meeting Friday with Sharon Hilliard  Deputy EDD Tax Branch and Jennifer Stuhr Chief Taxpayer Advocate I learned that EDD also has a similar program.
You can access it by going to Once  there click on  eServices.

Last week I asked people  to nominate government people  who have gone the extra mile for small business.

The nominees were:

Chris Henry Auditor IRS- Office of Small Business And Self Employed Department of Treasury
Mary Spencer- Deputy Office of Small Business Programs Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District South Pacific Division.
Michelle Mc Elrea  EDD
Ed Hernandez- State Senator
Ted Lieu- State Senator
Michael Allen and David Miller- Assemblyman and Senior Staff person.
All will be getting a letter of thanks from Small Business California.

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116


NR#           61-12-H
Date:          June 15, 2012
Contact:     Jaime Garza

Doing Business in California Just Got Easier with eReg
BOE Launches eReg (Electronic Registration) Service

Sacramento – Starting or doing business in California just got easier with eReg, the Board of Equalization's (BOE) new secure electronic registration system, announced Jerome E. Horton, Chairman of the State Board of Equalization (BOE) today.  The user-friendly service offers a convenient, fast, and free way to apply online for a permit, license, or account.

"eReg is just one more way the BOE is using innovative technology to make it easier to start and conduct business in California," said Chairman Horton.  "Helping businesses to succeed and getting them started quickly and efficiently is vital for California's economic health."

Beginning June 18, 2012, users can access eReg from the BOE's secure website – any time day or night – to apply for a seller's permit, pay use tax, and register for other tax and fee programs.  Answer a few simple questions and the system works to guide the user through the process of getting the permits, licenses, or accounts needed.  If users don’t have time to finish the application process, it’s no problem – they can save their application and return later to finish it. 

In addition, eReg allows you to:
  • Register for a special tax or fee account such as International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) accounts and Cigarette and Tobacco Products Retailer's Licenses
  • Add a new business location
  • Easily make use tax payments
  • View the status of your account(s) online
  • Access helpful reference materials, forms, and publications

Find out more exciting information about eReg from our short video at: youtube/yajs02nalvQ.

For a comprehensive list of features and to learn how eReg can help you, visit:

Editors, listen to the 30-second Public Service Announcement at:

From mobile applications to online seminars, the tools you need to help your business succeed are just a click away.

*                      *                      *                      *                      *

Elected in 2010, Chairman Jerome E. Horton is the Fourth District Member of the California State Board of Equalization, representing more than 8.5 million residents in Los Angeles County. He is also the Board of Equalization's Legislative Committee Chairman.  He is the first to serve on the Board of Equalization with over 21 years of experience at the BOE.  Horton previously served as an Assembly Member of the California State Assembly from 2000-2006.

The five-member California State Board of Equalization is a publicly elected tax board. The Board of Equalization collects more than $50 billion annually in taxes and fees supporting state and local government services.  It hears business tax appeals, acts as the appellate body for franchise and personal income tax appeals, and serves a significant role in the assessment and administration of property taxes.  For more information on other taxes and fees in California, visit

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

EDD/ Government People that Have helped you

On Friday I will be meeting with Sharon Hillard Deputy of the Tax Branch at EDD. Quite frankly this agency has been a mystery to me and I have not been able to figure out how to work with them. Hopefully Friday I will get some direction. Please see below information about classifying independent contractors and contacts in the Taxpayers Advocates office.

Does anyone have any experience in working with EDD. Have you been audited? What questions would you like me to ask Sharon?

Once a year I ask small businesses  to identify people in government they have worked with  that have been helpful to them. Small Business California will send a letter to them thanking them for their efforts. The person can be anyone from an elected official to a government employee. My  person  this year is Ellen Widess head of Cal OSHA. She has been extremely helpful in providing me information about how Cal OSHA works and the resources they can provide small business.

Please provide me the  name of the person  and why you have put their name forward. Also provide me with contact information. The letter will include your name as the person who put forth their name.

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116

Good Morning,

I spoke to my supervisor about how an employer can determine if their worker is employee or independent contractor.   An employer can call our Taxpayer Assistance Center  888-745-3886 and ask to speak to the Auditor of The Day.   The customer representative will forward their call to the Auditor of The Day, and the auditor can tell them if they classifying the worker correctly.   Employers can also submit a
DE 1870 to EDD (the address is listed on the form) if they want a written determination on the classification of the worker. 

I addition to the above resources, the employer can also read our information sheets about common law, statutory law and various other types of employment (link below)

They also can attend an Employment Status Course online (see link below) to get the basics on how to determine if a worker is an employee.

Please let me know if you have any other questions about how an employer can determine the status of their worker.

Thank you,

Azibaye M. Ikeni
Taxpayer Advocate Office
Tax Support Division
916-319-1468 - Fax

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

SB Cal Strategic Plan

Tomorrow Small Business California will be having a board meeting to discuss what our direction will be in the future. I would like to ask you what you think about Small Business California and do you think we are representing the interest of small businesses in California. What are our strengths and what do you see as our weaknesses. If there was one thing we could do to better represent the interest of small businesses what would it be?

If you are not a member what could we do to get you to join our Association?

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116