Principal at Silicon Associates. Oversaw its car export business, Carzini in Palm Beach, Fla.
We shut our business down directly as a result of overregulation from the city, county, state and federal government.
I collect Porsches. Exotic cars have always been an interest of mine. This gave me an idea for a business, buying and selling cars.
It is a very highly regulated business. What used to be a very simple business became very complex and expensive. The business model is very simple: Buy exotic, domestic vehicles of various makes and sell them to people in Europe and the Middle East.
The irony is that I was good at navigating Europe's regulations, which are worse than the United States. But in the end, it was the regulations here that caused me the most problems.
Carzini opened in Palm Beach, Fla., for six months, in 2010. Florida is supposed to be a pro-business state compared to other states, such as New York and California. But it didn't seem that way when we were running the business.
I sat down with my manager and we did a list of all of the regulations that we had to comply with. It turned out to be 25. Some of them had fees as high as $25,000; certain violations carried years of jail time. And all of them seemed complicated.
I spent more than $100,000 trying to comply with all those regulations and I was open only six months.
The last straw? Parking regulations at the local, state and federal level.
They basically say that cars for sale cannot be parked on personal property. I thought this was America. So all the vehicles had to be stored inside. Generally, this wasn't a problem.
But sometimes it created a major logistical nightmare when a car was received from distant locations in the middle of the night, for example. The violation fees could be enormous.
This stuff makes you want to rip out your hair. These regulations don't help business. And they don't help consumers either.
We asked 10 small businesspeople what would they ask President Obama to do to make it easier for them to hire.
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