(LANCASTER, Pa.) September 3, 2014 – Clint Ehlers, owner of the local Willow Grove and Lancaster FASTSIGNS® centers, is heading to Washington, D.C. September 9 to testify before Congress and explain the potential threat to his and thousands of other franchise businesses following the National Labor Relation Board’s decision to pursue the McDonald’s® Corporation as a “joint employer”.
“I am a local business owner who hires and manages my own staff,” explained Ehlers. “I make the decisions on everything from the day-to-day operations to the salary and benefits of my team. FASTSIGNS International, Inc., the corporate franchisor, is not a joint employer for my business or any of the other 550+ FASTSIGNS locations worldwide. The repercussions of this decision will have devastating consequences for the entire franchising industry and small business owners like me.”
Ehlers will appear before the congressional U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee to provide firsthand experience on how the recent general council decision by the NLRB will negatively impact his business. FASTSIGNS of Lancaster and Willow Grove are independently owned and operated franchises, giving Ehlers access to the FASTSIGNS brand and its systems, but enabling him to make his own decisions in regards to the operation of the business.
“People think that the local FASTSIGNS franchisee (who might have three to eight employees) is part of a big company with ten thousand employees, and that is not how the franchisor relationship works,” said Catherine Monson, CEO of FASTSIGNS International, Inc. “Franchisees are independent business owners who live in their market, pay local taxes and get involved in their community.”
Along with his wife Christina, Clint first came to the FASTSIGNS network in 2007, fulfilling an entrepreneurial dream by opening a FASTSIGNS in Culver City, California. After growing it into one of the top centers in the country, the Ehlers sold the center in 2012 and relocated to Pennsylvania where they purchased FASTSIGNS of Willow Grove. In 2014, they purchased FASTSIGNS of Lancaster.
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Editor’s Note: Click here for a high-res photo of Clint Ehlers, owner of FASTSIGNS of Willow Grove and FASTSIGNS of Lancaster.