From Reason:


Overzealous regulators quashing entrepreneurship. What happens “when the city comes for your home-based business?” An increasing number of people are finding out, note the R Street Institute’s C. Jarrett Dieterle and Shoshana Weissmann in a new Wall Street Journal op-ed.

As more people work from home in fields that traditionally required office space, U.S. municipalities are increasingly turning their attention toward these home-based business owners. Without seeing clients at home, putting up advertisements, etc., freelancers and small-time entrepreneurs seldom see themselves as people in need of special licenses just to do the work they do from desks tucked inside their primary residences. But officials often see things differently.

“In 1992 there were about 16 million home businesses in the U.S., according to census data,” report Dieterle and Weissmann. “By 2012 that number grew to 27 million. Today about half of all American businesses are home-based, according to the Small Business Administration. At the same time, local governments have become more aggressive in cracking down on home-based businesses.”

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