The current economic climate isn't optimal for the small business community that drives the Oregon economy. As most Oregonians feel at the check-out counter, inflation is raging at the quickest pace in 40 years. Supply chain hiccups are limiting what can be stocked on store shelves. And consumer demand is chilling as the odds of entering a recession grow by the day.

But one additional threat to small businesses that remains hidden from the public view are the rising costs associated with using credit cards. Every time a consumer swipes, inserts or taps a credit card at the checkout counter, the merchant is charged a fee. These "swipe fees" — which amount to a percentage of the total bill — go to the big banks and credit card companies responsible for managing the transaction.