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Insubordinate Employee

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Hate to be a downer as my first newbie post, but I figured this was the place to get an real world answer. I've been having trouble with an employee that has a growing attitude - a bad one-that is now crossed the line into insubordination in my opinion. I run a small shop, just myself, a partner, and one employee who handles most all of the repair work. So I am the service writer, the secretary, the accountant, the put out every fire that comes up guy as well as his BOSS. He's never been a happy guy, but recently has lost all respect for me as a boss and or employer and finds it easy to tell me what he thinks about whatever might be bothering him that day - weather it's his place or not! If I take the wrong "tone" when asking him something, If he thinks I'm asking him to do something that isn't really "his job" like picking up trash in the parking lot instead of walking over it, or dumping the trash when it's slow instead of me doing it after hours...etc. Never "good morning" never a smile, just a grunt when I say it to him. Says only what he must about repairs and expects me to figure out the rest, gets flustered if I have to ask him to explain something. Never happy with his pay or the comission check he gets. Even though I never short him hours even when slow - and we have been very slow- he's never missed a 40 hour paycheck. He punches his card to the minute and makes sure he never gives me a minute more than I paid him for. And lets me know it. I've skipped many weeks pay last year but he got every single week - but that never means anything. He's doing me a favor by shopwing up and doing his job every day. That's his mindset. He basically walks around with a chip on his shoulder waiting for something to make an issue over. Making my day miserable. The bad thing is that his work is near perfect. No comebacks, doesn't need me to hold his hand, and works at a respectable pace. Always at work early.I guess my question is this. Where's the line in a small shop like this? When does an employee's "personal problems" become insubordination? At what point do I say that's enough! Shouldn't I be able to expect some respect and be given it, as the person who signs his checks ? What are your thoughts? Discussing this with him always turns into a blowup - he's always right - and I've had enough, I'm ready to let him go. How far do you all bend to accomodate a problem employee because he does good work?

Thanks for the input. Sorry for the length. Really troubling me.

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