Gilbert Chamber Endorses Doug Ducey for Governor

PHOENIX – The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce today announced their endorsement of Doug Ducey for Governor, citing Governor Ducey's strong record of adding good jobs and making new investments in education.

“Governor Ducey is a valued partner in our efforts to recruit businesses and add new jobs in Gilbert,” said Kathy Tilque, President and CEO of the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce. “As a former business leader, he knows what it takes to build an environment where businesses can grow and employees can thrive. Recent successes like Isagenix, Silent-Aire, Deloitte, Morgan Stanley and many others are proof that Governor Ducey’s pro-jobs agenda is working.”

The Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Arizona Association of Realtors, the Greater Phoenix Chamber, the Chandler Chamber of Commerce, and the Mesa Chamber of Commerce have also endorsed Governor Ducey.

Arizona's economy shows strong signs of progress over the last three years, like 240,000 new jobs added and over 300 companies relocating or expanding in Arizona, but we have more to do,” said Governor Ducey.

Our state is growing because of the hard work of employees, entrepreneurs, and businesses in towns like Gilbert. I'm honored to have their support as we work to build on the gains we've made,” Governor Ducey said.

Background Recent economic forecasts showed “Arizona's job growth is expected to outpace the nation over the next several years,” adding more than 540,000 new jobs by 2026. Another Arizona State University forecast shows Arizona's economy poised to continue growing, with “no recession risk in sight.”

With a growing economy, more new jobs, and record revenue this year, Arizona has invested $2.7 billion into K-12 education since 2015, and school districts across Arizona are providing teachers double-digit pay raises.
###
GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES RECIPIENTS OF THE 2018 ANNUAL BUSINESS AWARDS

GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES RECIPIENTS OF THE 2018 ANNUAL BUSINESS AWARDS
 
Stacey Coronado of 20 Volume Salon and Spa and Brett Manning of Silent-Aire USA accept the Gilbert Chamber's Award for 2018 Businesswoman and Businessman of the Year

GILBERT - The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce announced today the recipients of the 2018 Annual Business Awards and recognized Chamber leaders at a luncheon.
 

Individual nominees were eligible for categories including Volunteer of the Year, Gilbert Leadership Award, and Businessman or Businesswoman of the Year.  Business nominees were eligible for categories including Employer of Choice and Large, Mid-Size, or Small Business of the Year. 

Award Recipients:
Volunteer of the Year - Robin Hall, Relay for Life Gilbert
Gilbert Leadership Award - Candy Body, Resource Leadership Group
Businessman of the Year - Brett Manning, Silent-Aire USA
Businesswoman of the Year - Stacey Coronado, 20 Volume Salon and Spa
Employer of Choice – San Tan Ford
Small Business of the Year – The Nitro Live Icecreamery
Mid-Size Business of the Year – School of Rock
Large Business of the Year – Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport

Other Individual Honorees:
Allison Beavers, Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center
Jeff Breid, CarLife Gilbert
Members of the Chamber’s Business and Education Committee
Jasmine Holmes, 910 West
Andrew John, John's Refrigeration
Carol May, Wisdom Natural Brands
Valerie Merrill, Legacy Traditional School Gilbert
Robert Mitchell, Showtime Realty Professionals
Jän Simon, Canyon Lands Insurance

Other Business Honorees:
APS
Buffalo Media
CarLife Gilbert
Dignity Health Urgent Care in Gilbert
Employee Benefit Exchange Corp.
MechaniCool
Silent-Aire USA
Woodard Construction

Nominees were required to provide a written submission and to participate in a panel interview. For each nominee, the written submission and the panel interview were scored by a review committee to determine today’s results. 

The luncheon also celebrated the Gilbert Chamber’s 40th Anniversary, including a look back at past logos and Board Chairs.

“The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce has dedicated more than 4 decades to this community by advocating for businesses, planning for our community’s future, giving back through our non-profits, and partnering to make this an amazing Town to do business, raise families, shop, dine, and play,” said Kathy Tilque, President and CEO of the Gilbert Chamber. “Our Chamber’s mission and business plan has always been guided by a Governing Board of Directors. And we have had some visionary Board Chairs over the years – they have provided their guidance and leadership to grow this Chamber.”

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 750 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit http://www.gilbertaz.com
.

###
GILBERT LEADERSHIP CELEBRATES GRADUATION OF CLASS XXVI

GILBERT LEADERSHIP CELEBRATES GRADUATION OF CLASS XXVI
Program Accepting Applications through July 6th


GILBERT – Gilbert Leadership celebrated the graduation of Class XXVI on Friday, June 8th at a formal ceremony recognizing 24 students in this year's class, all of whom have contributed to the community through leadership.

Gilbert Leadership, a program of the Gilbert Chamber Foundation, serves to raise up local leadership by promoting and inspiring action on issues that impact the Town of Gilbert. The program influences the community by building leadership capacity, increasing knowledge and awareness of community concerns, and nurturing future leaders. Over the past nine months, class participants have worked together to discover the infrastructure of Gilbert, including an inside look at our town's history, fine arts, local government, education, social services, healthcare, and more.

“Gilbert Leadership was a great experience,” said program graduate Traci Frederickson, of Fountain of Life Christian Fellowship. “Learning what it takes to make our town so great and meeting amazing people who are invested in a lifestyle of personal growth and giving back to their community was priceless. Gilbert Leadership gave me insight and tools to which I would have never experienced.”

Gilbert Leadership brings together individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences to develop their leadership potential. Participants experience personal growth and gain a unique perspective as they take an inside look at the workings of their community.

The following individuals were recognized as graduates of Gilbert Leadership Class XXVI:


David Baldwin, Via Circuits Inc.
Blake Bentley, Ready Logistics
Irma Bressler, CertaPro Painters
Mike Burkhart, Gilbert Fire Department
Judy Cato, Arizona State University/Victory AME Church
Kristen Drew, Town of Gilbert
Kellen Escoto, HD South/Gilbert Historical Museum
Traci Frederickson, Fountain of Life
Robert Gardner, Banner Health
Erik Gray, Leading Edge Academy
Vicki Kettner, Town of Gilbert
Randy Mahlerwein, Higley Unified School District
Caryn Mannheimer, Orbital ATK
Justin Martz, Wells Fargo
Bryanna McHenry, Salt River Project
Brendan O'Connor, Salt River Project
Cris Parisot, Town of Gilbert
Shannon Powell, TotSpot Preschool
Jonathan V Reece, Geneva Financial LLC
Brian Sexton, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Authority
Vincent Thomas, Mercy Gilbert Medical Center
Mike Thomason, Higley Unified School District
James Walker, Higley Unified School District
Nicole Washington, Mercy Gilbert Medical Center

Class members attended full-day sessions (Learning Days) once each month for nine months; complete a series of local tours; and work together to select, organize, and execute a class service project. Class XXVI constructed two Exchange Zones – one at each Police Station in Gilbert – to create areas for residents to exchange goods purchased on-line and for parents to conduct child custody exchanges in a well-lit environment and under the watchful eye of digital surveillance.

Gilbert Leadership is currently accepting applications to participate in the program’s 27th class and will begin interviewing applicants in July. Gilbert-area residents and/or employees are eligible to apply. Interested candidates should submit a completed application by July 6th. Program applications can be found online at gilbertleadership.com.

About Gilbert Leadership
Gilbert Leadership is a ten-month program of the Gilbert Chamber Foundation. Candidates are required to live or work in Gilbert, possess a commitment to community involvement and personal growth, and a desire to improve the Gilbert community. More than 530 alumni have discovered leadership opportunities and fostered lasting relationships through this program. Learn more at http://www.gilbertleadership.com GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS FOR LOCAL, DISTRICT RACES

June 12, 2018

GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS FOR LOCAL, DISTRICT RACES

GILBERT - The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce announces its endorsement of pro-business candidates running for Gilbert Town Council, Legislative Districts 12 and 17 – House and Senate – and Congressional District 5.  

Endorsements are based on a candidate’s voting record on the Chamber’s local and state priority bills (if incumbents), past and current community leadership and engagement, experience with the management of complex budgets, ability to represent the community in a professional manner, understanding and support of a pro-business environment, as well as the willingness to work with the Gilbert Chamber on policies and issues having significant impact on Gilbert’s business environment.

The Chamber Hosted a Candidate Forum for Congressional Districts 12 and 17 in May

According the Chamber CEO Kathy Tilque, while there were outstanding newcomers to the races, the Chamber considered the benefit of historic knowledge and long-time relationships in addition to the items noted above.  The incumbents were also ranked on whether they proactively ran bills for the East Valley Chambers of Commerce Alliance (EVCCA) and/or the Gilbert Chamber, along with supporting the Chamber’s public policy priorities as issues were presented for a vote.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce endorses the following candidates:

Gilbert Town Council (4 seats) – James Candland, Eddie Cook, Brigette Peterson, and Jordan Ray

Legislative District 12 Senate (1 seat) – Eddie Farnsworth
Legislative District 12 House (2 seats) – Travis Grantham and Warren Petersen

Legislative District 17 Senate (1 seat) – JD Mesnard
Legislative District 17 House (2 seats) – Nora Ellen and Jeff Weninger

Congressional District 5 – Andy Biggs

“We know Gilbert’s business community is looking to the Chamber to dig deep and identify those candidates who can continue to support our thriving community,” said Tilque. “Our endorsements come from the work and thoughtfulness of many volunteers from the business community who take the time to get to know the positions of each candidate and who take seriously their responsibility of making these important determinations.”


To learn more about all the candidates and to view their responses to the Chamber’s written questionnaire, visit the Chamber’s website at http://www.gilbertaz.com/2018elections

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 750 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit http://www.gilbertaz.com
.

###
GILBERT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ANNOUNCES ANNUAL BUSINESS AWARD NOMINEES

GILBERT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ANNOUNCES ANNUAL BUSINESS AWARD NOMINEES
Chamber to Recognize Nominees, Celebrate 40th Anniversary at Luncheon in June

GILBERT – The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce has announced the businesses and individuals nominated by their peers for recognition at the Twelfth Annual Business Awards and will announce award recipients at a luncheon in June.

Business nominees are eligible for categories including Employer of Choice and Large, Mid-Size, or Small Business of the Year. Individual nominees are eligible for categories including Volunteer of the Year, Gilbert Leadership Award, and Businessman or Businesswoman of the Year. The 2018 Award Nominees are as follows:


Business Nominees:
APS
Buffalo Media
CarLife Gilbert
Dignity Health Urgent Care in Gilbert
Employee Benefit Exchange Corp.
MechaniCool
Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport
San Tan Ford
School of Rock
Silent-Aire USA
The Nitro Live Icecreamery
Woodard Construction

Individual Nominees:
Allison Beavers, Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center
Candy Body, Resource Leadership Group
Jeff Breid, CarLife Gilbert
Business and Education Committee
Stacey Coronado, 20 Volume Salon and Spa
Robin Hall, Relay for Life Gilbert
Jasmine Holmes, 910 West
Andrew John, John's Refrigeration
Brett Manning, Silent-Aire USA
Carol May, Wisdom Natural Brands
Valerie Merrill, Legacy Traditional School Gilbert
Robert Mitchell, Showtime Realty Professionals
Jän Simon, Canyon Lands Insurance

The Twelfth Annual Business Awards Luncheon, presented by Cox Business, will be held on Wednesday, June 20th from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm at the DoubleTree by Hilton Phoenix-Gilbert. General admission is $75; Chamber member admission is $40. Add $10/person when registering after June 12th.

For more information or to register, visit the Chamber’s event calendar at http://www.gilbertaz.com
.
###

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 720 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com. Two Exchange Zones Coming to Gilbert

Two Exchange Zones Coming to Gilbert
Provides Monitored Spaces for Online Sale and Custody Transfers

Gilbert, AZ – Gilbert Leadership, a program of the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce Foundation, is constructing two Exchange Zones in Gilbert that will create an area for residents to exchange goods purchased on-line and for parents to conduct child custody exchanges in a well-lit environment and under the watchful eye of digital surveillance.

"As Gilbert continues to grow, there is an importance to have locations such as these to conduct exchanges,” said Kathy Tilque, Gilbert Chamber of Commerce President/CEO. “I am proud of Gilbert Leadership Class XXVI for identifying this need in our community and following through with an opportunity to provide not one, but two, exchange zones for our residents.”

The locations of the Exchange Zones are:
• Town of Gilbert Police & Fire Headquarters at 75 East Civic Center Drive
• Gilbert Police San Tan Station (NW corner of Greenfield & Queen Creek Road)

“Custody exchanges can be an emotional and contentious environment,” said Gilbert Police Chief Michael Soelberg. “I’m proud of the group of volunteers in the Gilbert Leadership Program for creating a space where custody exchanges can be done in a well-lit and digitally recorded environment.”

Gilbert resident, Kevin Gray, shared his experience with Gilbert Leadership Class XXVI, about being robbed at gun point last December.

"I've replayed this scenario multiple times in the last few weeks and I believe that if the scenario had taken place in a designated "exchange zone" at a police station, where there is surveillance and officers ready to step in if need be, it wouldn't have happened. Life is too short to put yourself in funny situations - especially for a few hundred dollars."

Both locations will be open to the public on April 8, 2018.

About Gilbert Leadership:
A program of the Gilbert Chamber Foundation, Gilbert Leadership was established in 1992 and today has more than 625 graduates. The program serves to develop our town’s current and future leaders by bringing together individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences to develop their leadership potential. Participants experience personal growth and gain a unique perspective of the Town of Gilbert and its community. Class members attend full-day sessions once each month for 10 months; complete a series of local tours; and work together to select, organize, and execute a class service project. Visit http://www.gilbertleadership.com to learn more.
###

Gilbert Leadership Media Contacts:
Kathy Tilque
Phone: 480-941-6325
Email: kathy@gilbertchamber.com

Brigette Peterson
Phone: 480-215-6214                                                    
Email: bdpetersonaz@gmail.com Gilbert Leadership celebrates 25th Anniversary with Time Capsule

Gilbert Leadership celebrates 25th Anniversary with Time Capsule


Gilbert Leadership Board Members gathered to celebrate the sealing of the program's time capsule

Gilbert, Ariz.  – The Gilbert Leadership Board of Directors and alumni gathered mementos and keepsakes from the first 25 classes of the leadership program. Gilbert Leadership began in 1992 as a premier leadership program for developing the next generation of leaders in the town of Gilbert.

Run by the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the program, now in its 26th year, has taken classes through program days focused on unique assets within the town of Gilbert. A key part of the program is for the participants to also learn about the history of the town.

Fittingly, as part of the 25-year anniversary celebration, the Board of Directors took on the time capsule project as a way to celebrate the history of the program. Paul Norbut, board director and graduate of Class 20, led the effort, along with fellow board members Tim Thompson, Jän Simon and Jaime Johnson.

Kayla Kolar, former Gilbert Leadership president and President of HD South, also worked closely with the group on the capsule project. The time capsule is being housed at HD South - Home of the Gilbert Historical Museum.

Some of the items enclosed in the capsule include photos from the various classes over the years, memorabilia from class projects, and a copy of John Maxwell’s “21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader,” which has been the guide post reading material for Gilbert Leadership classmates.

“The history of the town is an important part of the development process during the Gilbert Leadership program,” said Kathy Tilque, co-founder of Gilbert Leadership and President & CEO of the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce. “To be able to capture items from the program during the first 25 years, knowing that this capsule won’t be open till the program celebrates its 50th year, is incredibly exciting.”

About Gilbert Leadership
Gilbert Leadership is a ten-month program of the Gilbert Chamber Foundation. Candidates are required to live or work in Gilbert, possess a commitment to community involvement and personal growth, and a desire to improve the Gilbert community. More than 500 alumni have discovered leadership opportunities and fostered lasting relationships through this program. Learn more at http://www.gilbertleadership.com GILBERT BUSINESSES, EDUCATORS, LEADERS TO BE HONORED AT 22nd ANNUAL EVENT

November 1, 2017

GILBERT BUSINESSES, EDUCATORS, LEADERS TO BE HONORED AT 22nd ANNUAL EVENT
Chamber, Town, School Districts Partner to Present Excellence Awards

GILBERT – The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Town of Gilbert, education partners and others, will honor outstanding businesses and individuals on November 30th at the 22nd Annual Gilbert Community Excellence Awards, presented by APS.

The following award recipients will be recognized:

Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Scott Adamson, PH.D, Educator of the Year
Sharon "Cookie" Potter, Support Staff of the Year

Gilbert Chamber of Commerce
Strong Tower Insurance Group, Spirit of Business Award
Val Vista Lakes Community Association, Visionary Award
Jasmine Holmes of 910 West, Leon Uhlhorn Chairman's Award, sponsored by Strong Tower Insurance Group

Gilbert Public Schools
Shannon Gowens, Educator of the Year
Barb Zibell, Support Staff of the Year
Marie Ballerino, Volunteer of the Year

Higley Unified School District
Jennifer Robinson, Educator of the Year
Michelle Bogrett, Support Staff of the Year
Caroline Lamoreaux, Volunteer of the Year

Republic Media
Joe Johnston of Joe's Real BBQ, Beautification Award
Katie Marqueling, Young Hero Award
Eric and Amy Mendoza, Geneva Clay Community Award

Town of Gilbert
Dianna Erickson, Municipal Volunteer of the Year
Engine 252 and Ladder 253, Tim Dorn Public Safety Award
Dana Berchman, Municipal Employee of the Year

Sponsored by APS, this formal evening is filled with celebration as we honor those in the community who have excelled in the areas of business, education and community involvement. A partnership between the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, Gilbert Public Schools, Higley Unified School District, Chandler-Gilbert Community College, the Town of Gilbert and the Republic Media, the evening is truly a community event!

This event features Gilbert's Culinary Showcase with samplings provided by some of your local, favorite restaurants. A cash bar will be available for the purchase of soda, beer, and wine.
Individual tickets are $55 or a table for eight can be purchased for $440. For more information, contact Sarah at (480) 941-6322 or register online at http://www.gilbertaz.com
.
The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 700 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.

###
GILBERT BUSINESSES, EDUCATORS, LEADERS TO BE HONORED AT 21st ANNUAL EVENT

GILBERT BUSINESSES, EDUCATORS, LEADERS TO BE HONORED AT 21st ANNUAL EVENT
Chamber, Town, School Districts Partner to Present Excellence Awards

GILBERT – The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Town of Gilbert, education partners and others, will honor outstanding businesses and individuals on November 3rd at the 21st Annual Gilbert Community Excellence Awards, presented by APS.

The following award recipients will be recognized:

Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Employee of the Year Award – Iris Ishikawa, Administrative Assistant, Performing Arts Department
Educator of the Year Award – Jennifer Peterson, Early Childhood and Teacher Education Faculty

Gilbert Chamber of Commerce
‘Leon Uhlhorn’ Chairman’s Award – Dr. Christina Kishimoto, Superintendent, Gilbert Public Schools
This award sponsored by Marty Uhlhorn of Strong Town Insurance
Visionary Award – George Pettit, Former Town of Gilbert Manager
Spirit of Gilbert Business Award – Tracey Groy, Partner, Willow Massage + Spa

Gilbert Public Schools
Educator of the Year – Chip Pettit, Towne Meadows Elementary School
Support Staff of the Year – Vicki Eberhardt, Islands Elementary School
Volunteer of the Year – James Campbell, Pioneer Elementary School

Higley Unified School District
Educator of the Year – David Nuttall, Higley High School
Support Staff of the Year – Elneeta Timmons, Sossaman Middle School
Volunteer of the Year –Meredith Simpson, Higley Unified School District

The Gilbert Republic
‘Geneva Clay’ Community Volunteer Award – Mike Conner, Community Volunteer
Gilbert Young Hero Award – Nick Yeager, Campo Verde High School

Town of Gilbert
Mayoral Award – The Honorable John Lewis
Municipal Volunteer of the Year Award – Robert Poirrier, Gilbert Police Department Volunteer
Neighborhood of the Year Award – Devon HOA and The Reserve at Gilbert Towne Center
Public Service Award – Leah Hubbard Rhineheimer, Assistant to the Town Manager/Native American Management Internship Program

Sponsored by APS, the 21st Annual Gilbert Community Excellence Awards will be held on Thursday, November 3rd from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at The Falls Event Center. Awards will be presented by each of the event’s partners and the event will feature The Original Taste of Gilbert restaurant showcase. Individual tickets are $50 or a table for ten can be purchased for $500. For more information, contact Alma at (480) 941-6321 or register online at http://www.gilbertaz.com
.
The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 670 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.

###
EAST VALLEY CHAMBERS RESPOND TO RISE IN ADA COMPLIANCE LAWSUITS

August 10, 2016

EAST VALLEY CHAMBERS RESPOND TO RISE IN ADA COMPLIANCE LAWSUITS

GILBERT – East Valley Chambers, including Gilbert and Mesa, are working to help local businesses address the sudden rise in Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance lawsuits that are being filed against area businesses and property owners.

“In recent months, businesses in many communities have received the threat of lawsuits being filed against them,” said Sally Harrison, CEO of the Mesa Chamber of Commerce. “Our Chambers are responding to provide businesses with the resources to ensure ADA compliance.”

According to Harrison, the Mesa Chamber of Commerce held a forum and invited Attorney Lindsay Leavitt of Jennings, Strouss, and Salmon, PLC to present to business owners. Kathy Tilque, CEO of the Gilbert Chamber, is looking forward to a second forum this month.

“Because of the nature in which businesses are being targeted, we want to be sure they understand that they have options and may not need to immediately sign a settlement,” said Tilque. “It is likely that corrections to any incompliance can be made without need for a settlement or suit.”

An informational forum regarding ADA Compliance will be held on Tuesday, August 23rd at 4:00 p.m. at the Marriott Phoenix-Mesa, 200 N. Centennial Way, in Mesa. Register for this forum or view ADA compliance guides, resources and more by visiting gilbertaz.com/ADAcompliance.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 670 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.

###
GILBERT CHAMBER OPPOSES INCREASE TO MINIMUM WAGE, HOSPITAL EXECUTIVE PAY ACT, LEGALIZATION OF MARIJU

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 9, 2016

GILBERT CHAMBER OPPOSES INCREASE TO MINIMUM WAGE, HOSPITAL EXECUTIVE PAY ACT, LEGALIZATION OF MARIJUANA

GILBERT - The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce announces its opposition of three 2016 ballot initiatives concerning fair wages and healthy families; hospital accountability and executive pay; and the regulation and taxation of marijuana in Arizona. 

“We firmly believe that these issues attempt to mandate employer workplace management through the ballot box which jeopardizes the growth of our economy,” said Rich Vandermolen, Chairman of the Chamber’s Public Policy Committee. “Doing so is bad policy and almost always leads to unintended consequences that cannot be reversed.”

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce opposes the Fair Wages and Healthy Families Act.  The proposal mandates a $12 per hour minimum wage in Arizona by 2020 and increases burdens on employers by requiring mandatory paid sick time for all employees.

• Arizona’s minimum wage law already allows for annual hourly wage increases that are far above the federal minimum wage.  If this proposition passes, the minimum wage in our state will increase by nearly 50 percent in just four short years.
• It is widely known that minimum wage laws have negative economic consequences and often hurt those most that they are intended to help.   Artificially inflating labor costs forces business owners to lay off workers, reduce hours or increase prices.  In addition, this proposition places Arizona at a competitive disadvantage against other states in attracting businesses here that are looking to expand operations.
• This proposition also places undue regulatory burdens on employers as it empowers local governments to raise the minimum wage and paid sick time levels above the state minimum.  This patchwork of employment laws across the state would be almost impossible for business to navigate successfully.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce opposes the Hospital Accountability and Quality Care Initiative for following considerations:

• This measure severely diminishes the ability of our hospitals to attract and retain top talent and is a disincentive for highly talented individuals to remain in this vital healthcare industry.  
• This proposition by out-of-state unions seeks to cap the total annual compensation of healthcare professionals which would make Arizona the only state in the country to adopt such a damaging economic policy that will drive away jobs in the healthcare sector and other industries.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce opposes the Legalize Marijuana Initiative for the following considerations:

• Employers would not be able to enforce workplace drug policies in regards to proving “under the influence” versus “impaired” as the ballot language does not clearly define impaired.
• Several other states are currently amending their legislative statutes due to unintended consequences which would not be allowed in Arizona due to Prop 105. 
• This initiative does not provide for a free market process as it protects current marijuana producers and distributors against new competition in the industry.

These ballot issues were reviewed in-depth by the Chamber’s Public Policy Committee. Final review and approval was received by the Chamber Board of Directors.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 670 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.

###
GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES ENDORSEMENT OF JONES FOR CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT 5

GILBERT CHAMBER ANNOUNCES ENDORSEMENT OF JONES FOR CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT 5

GILBERT - The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce announces its endorsement of Republican candidate Christine Jones to represent Arizona's Fifth Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives.

"The caliber of Republican candidates in the race made this decision difficult as each candidate brought a high level of experience and knowledge with respect to their leadership skills and legislative expertise," said Joan Krueger, Chairwoman of the Chamber's Board of Directors.

According to Krueger, the scoring process used by the Chamber’s Public Policy Committee resulted in high ratings for Jones. The Chamber Board of Directors concurred with the ratings and support Jones for her ability to have successfully passed legislation as a corporate executive at the federal level by working across the aisle to find common ground.

"Christine's business background enhanced by her legal proficiency brings a perspective that would enhance the business community's agenda on the Hill," Krueger said.

The Chamber's Public Policy committee considered endorsements based on each candidate's voting record on the Chamber's local and state priority bills (if incumbents), past and current community leadership and engagement, experience with the management of complex budgets, understanding and support of a pro-business environment including "in the trenches" experience with dealing with regulation overreach, as well as the willingness to work with the Gilbert Chamber on policies and issues having significant impact on Gilbert's business environment.

In addition to the endorsement of Jones, the Gilbert Chamber of Commerce announced in June the endorsement of town, legislative districts 12 and 17, and Maricopa County Supervisor candidates:


Gilbert Town Mayor (1 seat) – 
Jenn Daniels

Gilbert Town Council (2 seats) –
Scott Anderson and Bob Ferron

Legislative District 12 Senate (1 seat) – 
Warren Petersen

Legislative District 12 House (2 seats) – 
Eddie Farnsworth and Travis Grantham

Legislative District 17 Senate (1 seat) –
Steve Yarbrough

Legislative District 17 House (2 seats) –
JD Mesnard, Jeff Weninger

Maricopa County Supervisor District 1 (1 seat) –
Denny Barney

Maricopa County Supervisor District 2 (1 seat) –
Steve Chucri


Video coverage of recent candidate forums can be found on the Chamber's Facebook page – Facebook.com/GilbertChamber. To learn more about all the candidates and to view their responses to the Chamber's written questionnaire, visit the Chamber's website at GilbertAz.com/2016MeetTheCandidates.

The Gilbert Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit, membership-based organization with more than 670 members ranging from home-based businesses to large corporations and representing more than 52,000 employees. The Chamber proactively serves as a business advocate to strengthen the business climate in Gilbert. To learn more about or join the Chamber, please contact (480) 892-0056 or visit gilbertaz.com.