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By Fred Barnes

The Last Business Standing on Main Street

Do you remember when it was the American dream to own your own business and determine your own destiny? Main Street America was filled with small shops owned and worked by individual entrepreneurs. The hours were long and being in business meant solving many challenges but the rewards for successful operations were great. Crowds filled the sidewalks and patronized the in-town merchants. There was a certain excitement and magic that occurred downtown.

Today most of the mom and pop businesses have vanished having been driven out of business by competition from strip malls and mega stores. Left on Main Street pursuing the American dream are alcohol beverage retailers, the heart of the hospitality industry.

The off-premise licensees are confronting legislation that will allow an entity to have more than two distribution licenses. The passing of such legislation would force hundreds of owners out of business. The NJLBA along with an industry coalition is actively fighting this legislation.

It is coincidental that since the end of prohibition in 1933, the New Jersey Licensed Beverage Association has represented the on-premise licensees in their flight to stay in business and preserve the dream of business ownership? Has the voice of the Association been loud enough and strong enough to keep on-premise licensees in business? Main Street is still home to thousands of individual business people who provide hospitality to the local population. Every day, the neo-prohibitionists are proposing more and more restrictions and legislation to curtail the ability of the individual businessperson to survive. How will ignition interlock devices or the lowering of the BAC affect your business?

Maintaining dedicated lobbyists in Trenton and Washington working so that you can survive requires resources. The annual dues of $225 per year are a small investment to insure your business from over-bearing regulations and over powering legislation.

Who will be the last surviving small business on Main Street? Join today and do your part to keep the American dream alive.

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