Batavia business owners had reactions ranging from pleased to p.o.'d after President Barack Obama's reelection victory this week.
Batavian Bob Lisberg, owner of Pockets Restaurant in Aurora, has noticed the slow but steady growth of the stock market since Obama was first elected in 2008. He hopes a second term also means prosperity.
"While we have a long way to go, I think we are on the right course," he said.
Although Lisberg has been able to hire more people and open a Kirk Road location since Obama was first elected, he did not want to speculate on what the reelection could mean for unemployment rates and job creation.
Another Batavia business owner, Scott Salvati, is doubtful that Obama's reelection will bring more employment. He wasn't a big fan of Romney, but his was a big fan of Romney's vision for reviving the economy.
"(With Obama) I haven’t heard anything about job creation," said Salvati, co-owner of Lighthouse Marketing. "(Mitt Romney) was very, very specific about how he was going to work with taxes to allow small business to invest in themselves, to hire more people."
Salvati called small businesses the backbone of the economy. He is concerned that the president doesn't champion owners like himself.
"He’s not a fan of small business, at least I haven’t seen it," he said. "We’re pretty nervous about what’s going to happen."
Salvati said Obama's polices, namely the affordable healthcare act known as Obamacare, has made it difficult for him to expand his team and pay for the cost of the personnel he does have. He was paying more than half of someone's health care, and now he can't.
"For us, to be competitive in the landscape, you want to be able to offer health care to potential employees, or at least offer them discounted healthcare," Salvati said. "But if my premiums are going up by 30 to 50 percent every year, it’s (paid) directly from my bottom line. It’s an absolute killer."
Not All Obama's Fault
At least one business owner doesn't expect any dramatic changes.
Shawn Roohani, owner of Computer Plus, said his business is so small that it can weather some of the hard times. Roohani offers computer repair, virus removal and installation.
"If I'm short one month, I can take savings, take a loan out and keep going," Roohani said. "It’s not going to break my back. On the other hand, I’d like to have more things going here so I can hire more people."
Roohani had to cut down his staff even before Obama's first term. One of the biggest factors in his business is the seasons—the school year, including winter, brings in more customers than the summer.
Lisberg is hopeful that politics doesn't continue to muddy policies and laws for businesses to succeed.
"With the election ended, it gives the opportunity for Democrats and Republicans to come together and do things for the good of the country," he said. "It’s all about compromise."
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