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Chamber Policy and Community Committees
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS COMMITTEE
Researches and tracks proposed legislation and regulations that have the potential to impact the Chamber membership utilizing the resources of the Chamber's standing issues sub-committees. Develops and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors on possible courses of action on Chamber positions. Provides a business community forum with local, state, and federal representatives to discuss issues of importance to the Chamber membership and educate the business community on important government affairs issues and policies. The committee is part of the Chamber's grassroots network that engages others to advocate positions and policy issues to elected officials and regulatory agencies.
STANDING ISSUES SUB-COMMITTEES
Benefits & Workforce Issues Sub-Committee
To ensure we have a workforce and the ability to compete we need to ensure fair employment policies that preserve management flexibility. This sub-committee encourages our legislators to look at key issues to make sure we are creating a competitive business environment for business to succeed and sustain/grow jobs. Businesses rank health insurance costs as one of the top issues they face and the Chamber recognizes the need for comprehensive reform. This sub-committee is committed to working with policy makers to find solutions to these and other challenges.
Budgets (Fiscal Policy) & Taxes Issues Sub-Committee
The PA Budget Planning Process is currently focused on funding all departments and existing programs and then determining which ones to cut after the projected revenue is established. With the Pension crisis and the need to repay federal loans, the process must be re-evaluated. A fair and competitive business tax structure is essential to attracting and retaining businesses. This sub-committee is focused on efforts to create a more competitive tax climate.
Economic Policy - Trade and Infrastructure Issues Sub-Committee
Public policy issues surround our economy and programs that enable business to grow and create jobs. Access to reasonable capital in a timely manner is important and many of our current programs contain exceptional requirements to be eligible or the process is cumbersome and expensive to apply. There is growing importance of international trade, both import and export, for Berks County businesses and the US economy as a whole. This sub-committee is focused public policy issues surrounding trade and foreign direct investment to ensure all participants operate under comparable requirements and eliminate artificial barriers to trade. Additionally, they are focused on the role of the chamber in the Ride to Prosperity (economic development plan ) and City of Reading Act 47 process and recovery. Energy & Environmental Issues Sub-Committee The need for energy and environmental policies that are cost-effective, technologically feasible and flexible are important to business. This sub-committee works to educate members on business opportunities and incentives, provide leadership on how businesses can become more environmentally responsible and monitor the impact of the removal of caps on the cost of electricity.
Energy & Environmental Issues Sub-Committee
The need for energy and environmental policies that are cost-effective, technologically feasible and flexible are important to business. This sub-committee works to educate members on business opportunities and incentives, provide leadership on how businesses can become more environmentally responsible and monitor the impact of the removal of caps on the cost of electricity.
Transportation Issues Sub-Committee
From transporting your goods and services, to convenient customer access, to the commute of your employees, transportation issues affect your company's operations on a daily basis. We need a transportation and infrastructure system that is modern, safe and efficient in order to facilitate the free flow of goods and commerce and the mobility of our citizens for business and recreational activities. This sub-committee focused on ppromoting a better understanding of policy initiatives and goals of our region dealing with transportation to resolve our transportation funding-gap, maintain system integrity, support Commuter Service and build new infrastructure capacity.
COMMUNITY RELATIONS COMMITTEES
Cleans and Safe Committee
Keeping Greater Reading clean and safe is a shared responsibility. This Chambers committee aligns the various groups involved with clean and safe initiatives to promote the quality of place as established in The Ride to Prosperity (economic development plan). We identify issue champions and resources so we do not duplicate efforts. Key initiatives include Downtown Improvement District activities, community development programs, lighting projects, blighted buildings, beautification programs and the Penn Corridor Initiative.
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