Southern AZ small business owners split on GOP tax plan

Southern AZ small business owners split on GOP tax plan

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Arizona Sen. John McCain's endorsement of the GOP tax bill on Thursday, Nov. 30, has some in the Tucson area eager for the change and others worried what it will me for them.

Nina Borgia-Aberle traveled from Tucson to Washington D.C. to speak Wednesday, Nov. 29, about her concerns with the bill. With Senators from Hawaii and Pennsylvania by her side, Borgia-Aberle said just the thought repealing the individual healthcare mandate as part of the bill makes her sick to her stomach.

"The people of this country spoke," she said. "And they said 'No, health insurance is important. We want to make sure people get their health insurance'."

As a single mother and small business owner, she said the Affordable Care Act is what allowed her to properly take care of her health. She said without it, her costs would skyrocket and she'd be buried by debt like before she enrolled and payed down those costs.

Borgia-Aberle is a member of Moms Rising. The organization describes itself as "an on-the-ground and online grassroots organization of more than a million people who are working to achieve economic security for all moms, women, and families in the United States."

She said the $1 trillion that this plan is expected to add to the national deficit flies in the face of the lesson she instilled in her son, Juan, since he was  young.

"I've always taught my child don't spend money on things you don't have, that you can't pay for, that you don't know a check is coming in the mail, you know, in a month you won't be able to pay for this," said Borgia-Aberle. "So why is our government being so fiscally irresponsible?"

Carlos Ruiz, owner of HT Metals, doesn't see it that way. He is in favor of what GOP lawmakers have proposed.

"I'm paying too many taxes," he said. "I would like to see some tax relief. I think that the tax relief...it's going to spur some economic growth."

Specifically, in his manufacturing company that he founded in 2003 and moved into a larger space near South Irvington Road and East Palo Verde Road in 2011.

He said there's nothing preventing him from growing right now, but the benefits for S-corporations, or "pass through" companies, like his would encourage growth. Ruiz said it helps with deductions on equipment expenses and allows his five full-time employees hang on to a little more money in their paychecks.

"We're having a good fourth quarter and it looks like I've got some orders already planned in January," he said.

Borgia-Aberle said she visited offices of Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake when she was in D.C. She said it's important that our elected leaders hear the people they represent. Ruiz said he felt heard because of McCain's comments Thursday.

"I'm not taking credit," he joked as he mentioned emailing McCain. "His support was important to me."

The senator received an endorsement from the National Hispanic Chamber of Commerce at an event at HT Metals in 2016.

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