Chamber Sets Legislative Priorities for 2020
Business View – March 2020 / Legislative Agenda
On a daily basis, decisions are made in Montgomery and Washington, D.C., impacting businesses in Mobile. To ensure member businesses and industries have a voice in local, state and federal government, the Mobile Area Chamber sets legislative priorities and works tirelessly to advocate for the local business community. For 2020, many of the Chamber’s priorities are ones that have been long-standing, pressing issues for our community – all with a focus of creating new and growing existing jobs in the area.
“Infrastructure improvements like deepening and widening the Port of Mobile Ship Channel are essential to growth, and revenue is essential to infrastructure. Keeping the cyclical nature of funding, infrastructure and growth in mind, the Chamber is working to create a positive business environment that brings jobs to Mobile so the state can grow its tax base and invest in Alabama,” said Nick Lawkis, executive director of government relations, University of South Alabama and chair of the Chamber’s Governmental Affairs Committee.
“In this environment, a strong public education system is critical to cultivating a thriving business community. The Chamber supports public education systems such as Mobile County Public Schools, community colleges and universities, and will continue to advocate to fully fund Alabama’s education budget so they can deliver a college- and career-ready workforce to its industry partners.”
“Getting connected with the Chamber’s governmental affairs team is a great way to stay engaged in the policy-making process while staying focused on your business,” said Lawkis. “They are sitting at the table for you and advocating on your behalf, and are a huge value add to your membership.”
In developing the agenda for 2020, the Chamber’s community and governmental affairs staff met with key partners including the Alabama State Port Authority, Mobile Airport Authority, City of Mobile, Mobile County Commission, University of South Alabama and private industry to discuss critical issues impacting local business and industry. From these meetings, a survey was developed and sent to the entire Chamber membership seeking guidance on prioritizing legislative issues. With assistance from the Governmental Affairs Committee, the draft agenda was developed, then presented to the Chamber’s executive committee and approved by the board of directors in January.
KEY GOALS OF THE AGENDA INCLUDE:
▪ Supporting Austal USA’s bid to build the U.S. Navy’s new frigate;
▪ Advocating for fair trade and reduced trade barriers;
▪ Fighting for good stewardship of Rebuild Alabama revenue;
▪ Ensuring the education budgets are adequately funded; and
▪ Promoting recompilation of Alabama’s Constitution.
TO READ THE CHAMBER’S LEGISLATIVE AGENDA, CLICK HERE.
About the Mobile Chamber
The Mobile Chamber is a private business organization with more than 1,700 members and the economic developer for the City of Mobile and Mobile County. The Mobile Chamber’s focus is to provide members with networking, marketing and professional development opportunities, expand jobs in the area, develop the local workforce, advocate legislative priorities and offer resources to help small businesses grow. Additional information is on the Chamber’s website, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.