YARMOUTH – It is disappointing to see someone who is supposed to lead efforts to protect small business take such a supportive position on a law that will devastate businesses for years to come.

But that’s exact what Jeanne A. Hulit, regional administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, did recently in touting the partisan reform law adopted earlier this year (“Health care law a critical tool for small business,” July 17).

Hulit got one thing right — small businesses have been asking for more affordable health insurance for decades.

Unfortunately, the health care law’s new taxes, new mandates, new regulations and new reporting requirements miss the mark in a big way.

Right out of the box, Hulit touts tax credits as the apparent cure for all that ails small businesses.

If this tax credit is the best thing they have to show small businesses from this trillion-dollar health care bill, then small business across New England have a reason to worry.

The credit is significantly limited (if you’re self-employed, no credit), complicated and temporary.

But, most importantly, the credit does nothing to reduce the health care costs for small businesses over the long term.

To make matters worse, leaders in Congress also slipped in a new reporting requirement to help pay for this health care law that will require all businesses to now file tax Form 1099 on every business-to-business transition of $600 or more, including buying normal supplies.

This has nothing to do with health care and everything to do with taxing small businesses and increasing their paperwork burden.

I hardly call this a reform that any small-business advocate should support.

This list of complaints for this bill is long, and small-business owners are getting impatient with the endless lip service to their needs.

In the end, the political leaders in Washington did what they always intended on doing — expanded government programs, handed out expensive subsidies and did nothing to fundamentally lower costs.

In fact, the adverse effects on small businesses were one of the reasons Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins voted against the legislation.

As Snowe and Collins noted in statements last March, the law raises taxes and premiums for many Americans, reduces choices for consumers, hits small businesses with stiff penalties and hinders small business job growth.

These senators understood that it isn’t what the law does for small businesses, but what the law does to small businesses, that creates such heartburn.

It is hoped that Hulit will begin to understand the depth of new burdens on New England’s small businesses and work to fix them — before more jobs are lost and businesses go under.