NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- What's happening in small business today? 1. Franchise growth is lagging. Franchisors are wary of expansion due to the anticipation of higher taxes and continued trouble in accessing credit, according to the International Franchise Association's third-quarter update of its 2012 economic forecast. The IFA has revised its forecast for franchise creation for 2012. It now expects the number of new franchise establishments in the U.S. to increase by 1.5% this year compared to an initial forecast of 1.9% and a decline in establishments since 2009. Despite the declines, jobs and output are expected to outpace the overall economy, the IFA says. The association is assuming modest growth across the 10 major business lines in the franchise sector. "There is a wealth of job creation waiting to be tapped in the franchise sector, but existing and prospective franchise business owners are waiting on the sidelines to open new stores until they have more certainty and confidence that Congress will not raise their taxes," IFA CEO Steve Caldeira said. "Despite the headwinds facing small businesses, the franchise industry is still growing at a faster pace than the overall economy, signaling the strength of the franchise business model," Caldeira said. "New franchise businesses will be opening across all 10 business lines for the first time since 2008. If policymakers want to find more ways to support job creation, they should look at ways to help spur more growth in the franchise industry by pursuing pro-growth policies including comprehensive tax reform." Sectors that are adding establishments above the overall industry average of 1.5% are business services (2.2%), lodging (2.2%), quick service restaurants (1.9%), personal services (1.9%) and table/full service restaurants (1.7%), the report says. Those adding jobs above the industry average include business services, personal services and retail food franchises overall. 2. Signs it may be time to hire an employee. As an entrepreneur, is the quality of your work starting to slip? Are you passing on big opportunities because as the sole employee you can't handle the workload? Do you never see your kids? Yes, the vast majority of small businesses are sole proprietors and hiring employees always comes with risk (and costs), but here are three reasons to hire staff, according to a blog post on Scott's Local Business Corner. 3. Best small business Facebook pages. From a website that recruits and helps transition former military into civilians to a chicken egg carton retailer, Social Media Examiner named the 10 best Facebook ( FB) pages by small businesses. Sifting through more than 1,800 nominations of 500 small businesses, the judges took into account landing pages, engagement, reader involvement and creative use of promotions, among other things. Social Media Examiner also pointed out that none of the winners have huge budgets, but achieved "amazing success" on the social media site. -- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York. Follow @LKulikowski To contact Laurie Kulikowski, send an email to: Laurie.Kulikowski@thestreet.com. >To submit a news tip, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.