CALA kicked off its Small Business Summer campaign in Chico, California on Friday, July 12. Now I know you are asking: what is Small Business Summer?

Small Business Summer is designed to accomplish three goals. The first goal is to raise awareness about the impact of lawsuit abuse on small businesses. Small businesses are too often the victims of lawsuit abuse, and just one abusive lawsuit can mean the difference in whether a small business succeeds or fails. CALA wants to raise awareness of this issue and make sure that everyone understands how lawsuit abuse hurts small businesses.

The second goal is to make sure that the voices of small business owners are heard. There are nearly 3.5 million small businesses in California. This is potentially a huge political force. Small Business Summer offers small businesses a chance to engage in an important dialogue about the legal challenges they face.

The third and final goal is to bring legal reform to the forefront of discussions on improving the economy. Policymakers have a lot of ideas regarding how to help small businesses, but they do not often consider the role reforms to our legal system can play in improving the economy. We need to elevate the issue of legal reform so lawmakers recognize how vital it is to helping businesses in our state create jobs.

With these goals in mind, Small Business Summer kicked off in Chico with Congressman Doug LaMalfa and State Senator Jim Nielsen discussing the impact of lawsuits on our economy with over 50 small business owners. Some of the issues discussed were the ongoing ADA drive-by lawsuits that have been plaguing towns like Chico, potential reform of Proposition 65 to discourage abusive lawsuits, and the multitude of lawsuits that keep California at the bottom of nearly all national surveys on legal climates.

Many members of the local press also attended and help spread our message of legal reform. One article in the Chico Enterprise Recorddescribed the different types of lawsuits hurting small businesses throughout the state.

We encourage you to become a part of our Small Business Summer activities. If you are interested in hosting an event, please contact us. We would love to come to your community and discuss legal reform with small business leaders. Remember, every business at one point was a small business.