End the Ban on Zenefits in Utah
This petition made change with 2,248 supporters!
Zenefits is still banned in Utah. The crime? Making life too easy for small businesses, according to the Utah insurance regulator who issued the ban. This may seem crazy – why would a bunch of insurance regulators shut down a start-up tech company – but it's true.
Zenefits is an online platform that allows small businesses to manage all of their human resources – including health insurance – for free. Last November, Utah's Insurance Department banned Zenefits in order to protect some traditional insurance brokers from online competition. Regulators argued that Zenefits' service makes it so easy for small businesses to sign up for health insurance that it was unfair to brokers who didn't have the same kind of online capabilities. Seriously.
But there's nothing "unfair" about this – it's just competition – and Utah is the only state in the nation to block small businesses from using Zenefits.
The ban on Zenefits runs counter to Utah’s principles of free-market competition, innovation, and entrepreneurship. That's the message we've heard loud and clear from small businesses and consumers across the state over the past few months. Thousands signed a petition to Governor Gary Herbert calling for the ruling to be overturned – and tech advocates and policy experts agreed.
Now, the Utah legislature is taking action. Representative John Knotwell and Senator Curtis Bramble have introduced a bill to clarify that Utah supports innovation and competition, and that small businesses in Utah should have access to the same online services that are available in every other state.
Utah is generally seen as a good place to do business, and it is fast becoming a new destination for start-up technology companies – which is why it is so surprising that Utah regulators are putting up roadblocks to innovation. If Utah is going to roll out the welcome mat for start-ups, it cannot simultaneously slam the door on disruptive new technologies that threaten incumbent businesses, as regulators in other states have done with Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, and Tesla.
If you agree that small businesses in Utah should not have to pay more to manage their HR and health benefits online, and that Zenefits should not be shut down, then please join us in asking the Utah legislature to pass Rep. Knotwell and Sen. Bramble's bill and stand up for innovation and competition!
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