SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Chicago a “dystopian nightmare” for business

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

* Matthew Yglesias

The US Chamber of Commerce Foundation put together a little pamphlet looking at municipal business regulations in 10 major American cities. They combine all the information into a somewhat arbitrary aggregate index, but some of the specific findings are striking.

For example, if you want to start a professional services business in Chicago you are basically facing a dystopian nightmare:

* If the accompanying chart doesn’t make you sick to your stomach, I don’t know what will…

32 days compared to five in heavily regulated San Francisco?

- Posted by Rich Miller        


42 Comments
  1. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:39 am:

    You can cut that down… If you know the right people.


  2. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:42 am:

    Crazy.

    Especially since this isn’t skewed against Chicago. It compares Chicago to other major cities, apples to apples.


  3. - Nonplussed - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:44 am:

    Heavily regulated San Francisco? If you are trying to build housing, yes. But otherwise, it is the start-up capital of the U.S.


  4. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:45 am:

    Yet the startups keep coming to the dystopian nightmare.

    http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/223518/chicago-la-colorado-digital-startups-boom-in-q1.html


  5. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:49 am:

    This

    == Chicago also makes this relatively expensive with $900 in permitting fees, but New York charges even more — $1,306. ==

    and this

    == Immigrants, for example, often find it especially burdensome to navigate a complicated permitting process because they don’t have as many language skills or local contacts as native born Americans. Chicago is responding to this with special programs to help immigrants deal with the system, but simplifying the system might be smarter. ==

    also stood out.


  6. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:49 am:

    @Word,
    Pro-services company vs money raised by startups (VC Backed). your showing an article with data that doesnt speak to the type of business being evaluated in the post.


  7. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:50 am:

    It takes less than a day in Houston, which is booming in population and business.

    This is Chicago.
    We don’t want your business.


  8. - RMWStanford - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:50 am:

    To some degree in Illinois when it comes to the business climate we focus to much on taxes and not enough on issues like this. There is little questions that Illinois needs to make itself more friendly to growth and start ups.


  9. - Commander Norton - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:55 am:

    Forgive me for asking an impertinent question, but are there social/economic/civil benefits to some of these regulations and costs to NOT regulating? Not all regulations are arbitrary, and the Chamber’s assumption that longer time periods and more procedures are necessarily a bad thing is simplistic.


  10. - walker - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:58 am:

    I thought “dystopian nightmare” might be a bit harsh, until I saw the chart. This is the kind of barrier Rahm has the personality to smash.


  11. - PublicServant - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:00 pm:

    Wouldn’t a balanced article ask Chicago officials for comments, or would that be too much work?


  12. - OneMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:01 pm:

    Well commander norton I will give an example…

    It costs $90 to form an LLC in Indiana vs $500 in Illinois vs $170 in Wisconsin.

    So if you are here and looking to start a small professional services firm (or even do something on the side) the ‘dealing with the government’ costs are much higher and might discourage some folks from doing it.


  13. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:01 pm:

    I had to look at a larger version of the chart in order to make sure that was a “32″ next to Chicago and not a “12″.

    This makes it appear Chicago succeeds “in spite of”, rather than “because of”, its regulatory climate compared to the city’s peers.


  14. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:02 pm:

    @commander
    Its hard to argue that we would be worse off in “Social/economic/civil benefits” if we made it faster to start a pro-services business… When compared to SanFran or NYC we are 4 or 5 x slower.

    Of course rich grabbed one piece of this. if you look at that actual article they grade for:

    Starting a business (time to start and licensing)
    Construction permits
    Registering Property
    Paying Taxes
    Contract enforcement (efficiency)

    Its actually an interesting look at the 10 cities.


  15. - RMWStanford - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:11 pm:

    Regulations are not always written with the best interest of soceity in mind, in some cases they end up written in way that protects existing businesses at the cost of new business ( ie possible compeitors)


  16. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:13 pm:

    I really don’t understand this. It hasn’t been my experience (I own and run a prof svcs firm in Chicago) nor has it been the experience of people I know.


  17. - Pete - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:15 pm:

    When Rahm sees this, the fee will increase from $900 to $1305.


  18. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:15 pm:

    Ok - Ron Oglesby - that explains it. You have to do none of those things to start a business when you’re renting. You pay your landlord and they take care of those things so this seems like a very misleading piece.


  19. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:17 pm:

    The 25 days of waiting for a license in the mail seems Sirius useless.


  20. - Will Caskey - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:19 pm:

    That really depends on what kind of professional services you’re talking about. If it’s not a category the city regulates then there are no permits required and you can set up in a day or so (expedited incorporation + FEIN application, voila).

    It should also be noted that the current mayor has drastically reduced the number of required licenses: http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/mayor/press_room/press_releases/2012/april_2012/mayor_rahm_emanuelannounces60percentreductioninlicensetypestohel.html


  21. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:29 pm:

    Anyone who had tried to open business here would tell you this report is optimistic. For real entertainment, look at small manufacturing or retail, something other than professional services. Pro services is the quickest business to open. Anywhere but Chicago of course. This is absolutely real, repressive and depressing. The labor force here remains attractive. And the location. Without both those factors, we’d have almost nothing going for us. Everything takes forever.


  22. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:29 pm:

    == It hasn’t been my experience (I own and run a prof svcs firm in Chicago) nor has it been the experience of people I know. ==

    True question, no snark: How were you and those you know able to do things so much more quickly than most others?

    Do other people just not understand all the rules and procedures in Chicago as well as you and they do? Is the Chamber’s work mistaken somehow? Is there no problem at all in your opinion? Is it the RonOglesby factor concerning “who you know”? What would you say accounts for your experience being so much different than (apparently) most others?

    Also, best wishes for prosperity towards your business.


  23. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:33 pm:

    True answer - when I set up my business, I did it the normal way - no special access or favors. As Will Caskey said above, if you’re talking law, marketing, accounting, PR, other kinds of generic professional services, it’s easy as pie to do it in Chicago. I can’t speak for retail or manufacturing or worse, hospitality.


  24. - Almost the Weekend - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:00 pm:

    =Forgive me for asking an impertinent question, but are there social/economic/civil benefits to some of these regulations and costs to NOT regulating? Not all regulations are arbitrary, and the Chamber’s assumption that longer time periods and more procedures are necessarily a bad thing is simplistic.=

    These statements are very frustrating on this blog. I love Chicago and am pro-Illinois all the way, but this statement is just an assumption with no research or details to support it. San Francisco and Los Angeles are both cities in California, which receives terrible reviews from groups like the Chamber of Commerce, yet they are on the same level to Dallas, a city in Texas, a stte the Chamber of Commerce adores. I think the link below shows why it takes 32 days in Chicago.

    http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20130807/BLOGS02/130809833/ford-dealer-held-up-by-politics-gives-chicago-a-deadline


  25. - Almost the Weekend - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    For people who dont have a subscription, here is another link from this blog last year.

    http://capitolfax.com/2013/08/08/the-chicago-way-2/


  26. - Chi - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:03 pm:

    My experience is in line with Chicago Cynic. And the chart says “professional services”. So I don’t understand how they got to 32. Again, I don’t doubt it may be more difficult to open a bar, restaurant, widget factory, etc.


  27. - horse w/ no name - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:29 pm:

    Don’t worry about this Mr. Mayor or City Council. Let’s get back to banning plastic bags and e-cigarettes and building a Star Wars museum


  28. - ArchPundit - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:29 pm:

    4 Days in Saint Louis–bawaaaa…sure…and I have the Eads Bridge to sell you.


  29. - OldSmoky2 - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:48 pm:

    And yet corporations keep coming to Chicago and moving headquarters here, Chicago’s gross metropolitan product is larger than most states and many countries, and Chicago continues to be ranked by business insiders as one of the top 10 places in the world to do business. Hmmm… I guess these dumb business leaders are just too focused on making money to listen to the political partisans who are running the U.S. Chamber these days.


  30. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    It on only took God 6 days to create the entire world.


  31. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:05 pm:

    Chicago Cynic - thanks for adding some details. I meant “true question” as in “please understand I am not attempting to assume or imply anything about why the experience of you and those you know has been so different from most”

    The experience of some people, such as yourself and those you mention knowing, is apparently much different than the Chamber’s findings and the normal experience of others in Chicago.

    Asking why you think that is was basically a way of asking how you think we might help others have the same experience you have.


  32. - A'mous - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:26 pm:

    The bigger problem is that it takes decades to overcome a bad reputation. Just ask Decatur


  33. - Illiana - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:29 pm:

    I would like to see what the figures would be in Joliet & Naperville.


  34. - Shark Sandwich - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:34 pm:

    It’s nothing to be proud of, but ‘dystopian nightmare’ is just hyperbole. It’s not like Rahm is sending out murderous search parties to find the last copy of the bible…


  35. - Enough - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:53 pm:

    Must not be too bad since Illinois is the 4th largest manufacturing state.


  36. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 3:27 pm:

    Chicago takes its zoning laws pretty seriously, as opposed to say, oh I don’t know, Houston, which doesn’t seem to have zoning laws from what I’ve seen.

    If you need to change the property’s zoning as part of your business plan, then yeah, it’s going to take a while. 32 days is optimistic in that regard, but hardly unreasonable.

    I’m not sure the Cubs qualify as a professional services firm (they’re professional losers recently), but take a look at how long they waited before the could do what they wanted to do on their own property.

    Plus, we’ve got 50 Alderman looking for a piece of the action. If we approve these businesses too quickly, how are they going to feed their families?


  37. - Chris - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 3:39 pm:

    “Houston, which doesn’t seem to have zoning laws from what I’ve seen”

    Doesn’t have zoning laws, period.


  38. - Steve - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:47 pm:

    Just a remember , Matthew Yglesias wrote this for Vox. When you’ve lost Matthew Yglesias you are in trouble. He’s an official “off the books” press operative for Barack Obama at Vox. He gets special briefings at the White House from Obama himself. So, you aren’t talking about some libertarian type here bad mouthing backward Chicago. You are talking about an errand boy for Barack Obama.


  39. - Anyone Remember - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 5:00 pm:

    Sometimes “excessive regulation” is a result of dealing with past problems like organized crime. For example, one (of many) reasons taxis are so highly regulated:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_C._Montana


  40. - Mama - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:58 pm:

    It could be due to under-staffing by S.O.S. in the business dept.???


  41. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:20 pm:

    ==Just a remember , Matthew Yglesias wrote this for Vox. ==

    If you’re a longtime Yglesias reader, you’d know he has been against the concept of widespread professional licensing schemes for a long time.


  42. - Johnny Utah - Wednesday, May 21, 14 @ 11:49 am:

    Starting your new business and competing with the established players is a crime here in Chi-town.

    If you do the crime be ready to do the time! Simple as that!


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Good morning!
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * Sony Xperia Z3 now available for purchase through T-Mobile
        * Tapkast Brings Ephemeral Status Updates To Your iPhone’s Lock Screen
        * Google Drive, Docs for Android updated with better search, PDF viewer
        * Lenovo Has Completed The $2.91 Billion Acquisition Of Motorola From Google
        * Use these apps to keep your little monsters safe on Halloween
        * Google Play Movies and TV app gets updated
        * Review: OmniFocus 2 for iPad makes life easier with extensions and background syncing

        * Assassin’s Creed Unity With NVIDIA’s GameWorks Shown Off On Video
        * What's The Best Burr Coffee Grinder?
        * Grand Theft Auto HD Collection Not Out Of The Question, According To Take-Two
        * Android 4.4 KitKat Not Coming For Huawei’s Ascend Mate 2
        * Former HTC Exec Raises Huge War Chest to Launch Gogoro, a Smart City Startup
        * Pictacular Is a Powerful Instagram Photo Browser for iPad and the Web
        * Sony Xperia Z3 Launched On T-Mobile

        * The offseason begins with a new Chicago manager and old arguments
        * World Series Game 7: Notes and discussion
        * Guillen, White Sox look back on '05 championship
        * White Sox offseason plan roundup: Designated hitter
        * Fall Stars Game filled to brim with talent
        * World Series Game 6: Notes and discussion
        * Thomas proud with Big Hurt Brewhouse set to open


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        October 2014
        September 2014
        August 2014
        July 2014
        June 2014
        May 2014
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * Waukegan School Board member apologizes for tel.....
        * Dems Rush to Save Suddenly Vulnerable Incumbents..
        * Waukegan schools, teachers reach tentative deal..
        * Why So Many Incumbent Governors Are in Politica.....
        * Does Former Tampa Bay Rays Manager Joe Maddon H.....
        * District 60, Waukegan teachers announce tentati.....


        * Illinois' US Senate candidates spar in last debate
        * Candidates spar in final debate US Senate debate
        * Chicago mayoral candidate says he can raise $3M
        * Judge denies ex-representative new bribery trial
        * Chicago pol investigated in prizes-for-votes plan
        * Restructuring to close 9 Chicago Catholic schools
        * Grocery chain sues Clorox for price discrimination
        * Lawyer: Rap reference in complaint misleading
        * Waukegan school board apologizes for actions
        * Rail improvements would increase daily trips

        * Judge denies ex-representative new bribery trial
        * Libertarian candidate for governor gets union cash
        * Illinois Supreme Court justice faces opposition
        * Quinn pledges $1.3M for 3-state intermodal port
        * Vallas: Rauner ‘doesn’t get it’ on minimum wage
        * Acquiring first seeds a dilemma for medical marijuana growers
        * Election 2014: Background on the big races, endorsements, videos
        * Medical pot dilemma: Where to get the first seeds?
        * Vallas: Rauner “doesn’t get it” on minimum wage
        * Ex-state lawmaker could change plea in child porn case

        * Is this the cheapest price yet for college textbooks?
        * 10 Things to Do
        * Classy in the classroom
        * Allstate profit more than doubles
        * Summers rakes in campaign cash; teachers pension fund chief retires


        * Durbin, Oberweis square off for final time
        * Refund those unfair yellow-light tickets
        * Sad day  when  Catholic  schools  close
        * Let’s not oversell CTA terrorist screenings
        * Let’s not oveRsell CTA terrorist screenings
        * Tourism biz should be more transparent
        * Emanuel: ‘World is different now,’ defends CTA random bag checks
        * Schneider, Dold fighting for the Jewish vote in 10th District: Sweet
        * Off-duty correctional officer shot; wounded suspect arrested at hospital
        * Man awaiting trial on sex assault charges accused of murder


        * Police shoot man in Back of the Yards
        * Waukegan school district, teachers announce tentative contract
        * Trauma center protesters target U. of C. capital campaign
        * U of C: No deal with nurses by Friday; union eyes strike vote
        * Teen shot in Marquette Park
        * Durbin touts record; Oberweis blasts 'political speak'
        * In video, mother tells how she wrapped newborn in plastic, put him in trash
        * Cops: Elgin man charged with murder in park stabbing
        * Cardinal: Closing 7 schools unavoidable in cash-strapped district
        * Majority of required elevator inspections not done in Chicago last year


        * Authorities: Springfield Woman's BAC Three Times The Legal Limit
        * 2014 Election Coverage: Citizens, here's your homework!
        * Aldermen skip chance to ask about city’s handling of police commander
        * Immigrant Rights Groups: Demand Oustrips Slots For Driver's Licenses
        * U-S Senate Candidates Differ On Ebola Response And More
        * Listen to State Week - October 24, 2014
        * A Look At Amazon's Move To Illinois
        * Bedrock 66: Charlie Parr Plays Springfield Friday
        * What's New With The Sangamon Valley Youth Symphony? Quite A Lot
        * Digging up the history of a Civil War camp on Chicago's South Side


        * Eugene Robinson: Ben Bradlee and the whole story
        * George Will: In Georgia, a capitalist struggles
        * Richard Dye and Richard Winkel Jr: Illinois’ fiscal situation is worse than you know or candidates will admit
        * Steve Herr: Benedictine in the administrative age
        * Quote of the Day: Thursday, Oct. 30
        * On Lincoln’s Side: A Just Pardon
        * Bernard Schoenburg: Bell accuses Scherer of ‘illegally’ taking tax break while he got same exemption
        * Judge denies ex-representative new bribery trial
        * Bill Edley: Will history repeat itself in the 17th?
        * Michael Gerson: A matter of ends


        * Clerk and sheriff seats contested in Saline County
        * Illinois bands corner
        * Jim Dey: Centennial senior keeps eye on master goal
        * Stars will guide Santa's sleigh in Parkland weekend event
        * Film capsules, Oct. 30, 2014
        * Marijuana policies are the problem
        * Entertainment listings, Oct. 30-Nov. 6, 2014
        * Clubs listings, Oct. 30-Nov. 6, 2014
        * Petrie conscious of farmland use
        * Scaring people a family affair


        * Waukegan school district, teachers reach tentative deal
        * Rozner: Cubs' pursuit of Maddon strictly business
        * Imrem: Rose, Bulls pass all tests in opener
        * No Indian mound means apartments can be built in Schaumburg
        * DuPage drug cops 'making a difference' in heroin fight

        * Patrick Cannon defense strategy rare but n...
        * Feds fine Jesse Jackson Jr.'s campaign com...
        * Ex-Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. faces sen...
        * Representative Jan Schakowsky Sends Letter...
        * Rep. candidate pushes to uphold marriage b...
        * Reps. Schakowsky and Waxman Introduce Bill...
        * Statement by Representative Jan Schakowsky...
        * U.S. House Passes Resolution Condemning An...
        * FAA Rejects Call For New O'Hare Noise Stud...
        * Representatives Quigley, Duckworth, Schako...

        * Durbin, Oberweis discuss NFL, space travel......
        * Dems Rush to Save Suddenly Vulnerable Incu......
        * Blue states no longer so friendly for Dems......
        * Blue states no longer so friendly for Dems......
        * Blue states no longer so friendly for Dems......

        * Hearing on ISIS's Atrocities Against Women......

        * Boo! Chicago Center for Green Technology closes
        * Beachwood Photo Booth: Skully Bungalow
        * Many Questions But Few Answers At Red Light Camera Hearings
        * Protestors Shutdown Wicker Park Intersection Tuesday Night
        * Have gift cards replaced turkeys as 21st Century preference for buying a vote?
        * The Off-Year Infections
        * Facebook To Hold Q&As With Illinois Gubernatorial Candidates
        * Facebook To Host Q&As With Illinois Gubernatorial Candidates
        * Report: Emanuel's $13 Minimum Wage Plan Would 'Shortchange' Women, Minority Workers
        * Waukegan and Hinsdale.


        * Quinn on buying votes with taxpayer money: “Is that a crime?”
        * Editorial: Ebola politics and health practices
        * Governor Pat Quinn Directs State Education Chief to Help Reach Resolution in Waukegan Local Teachers' Strike
        * Governor Quinn Announces Cronus Has Chosen Illinois for New $1.4 Billion Fertilizer Plant - Major Expansion Project to Create Thousands of Jobs in Central Illinois
        * IDOT, Illinois State and Local Law Enforcement Step Up Patrols for Halloween Weekend to Help Prevent Fatal Traffic Crashes - Motorists Reminded to Drive Sober, Buckle Up or Get Ticketed




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller