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Aaron McWilliams, Published February 17 2012

Fed mandates put hiring on hold

One year ago, I invented a new candle that’s poised to revolutionize the industry. In less than 12 months, we’ve grown from a concept in our kitchen to opening a 10,000- square-foot factory in my hometown of Hillsboro, N.D.

I am one of the young entrepreneurs our country needs. We’ve invented brand-new product lines, and we are bringing manufacturing to a small community, creating jobs and developing overseas accounts. We’ve done it all from scratch in less than one year, but government mandates and red tape threaten the momentum of our company, the jobs of our communities and the birth of new companies in our country.

At full capacity, our employee base should exceed 75 full-time workers, but I will never choose my business over my faith. I’ll keep our staff to a minimum so we won’t be forced to comply with new mandates that add undue expenses and contradict our faith.

Having studied as a Roman Catholic seminarian, I have full knowledge and understanding of the teachings of my faith, and I cannot and will not pay

50-plus times over for abortion, abortifacients or contraception, all of which contradict our core beliefs.

It is in our employees’, our company’s, and our country’s best interest that businesses provide benefits to their workers. But if by mandating health care, we slow job creation and create resentment among the people, we end up with healthy workers with no place to work. Is it worth it?

McWilliams is CEO of Spiral Light Candle Corp.