DEC. 1, 2017 - VOL. 54 No. 3

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Chair´s Column

Message from the Chair

By Steve Van Buskirk
2017-18 Chair of the Board

Steve Van Buskirk
Steve Van Buskirk
2017-18 Chair of the Board

No matter what industry you are in, your business is affected in some way by government regulation. As you make long-term plans for your business, you hope for a consistent regulatory environment-but we all know that regulatory change is a common occurrence. So, it is critical that you understand what issues are being considered, what decisions have been made, when they take effect and what impact those regulatory changes might have on your company.

Staying informed on the issues and being prepared to voice your perspective is no small undertaking. Many business leaders do not have the time to adequately engage with legislative issues while juggling their daily responsibilities. This is one reason that you belong to the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce. You can be assured that if an issue is important to your business, you have access to a team of professional staff and volunteers who are organized and ready to assist the business community.

Legislative advocacy is an important activity for the Chamber, and our team works hard to stay informed. The chamber reviews ballot initiatives, attends summer studies, organizes legislative coffees, attends city and county meetings and more. We report all this activity to the membership through Chamber Advocate, bill tracking and personal contact. Information gathered and feedback received from members is used to prepare position recommendations through the Issues Management Council. And, if necessary, we rally our partners to lobby for positive outcomes. This is not an exhaustive list of what your Chamber accomplishes, but it would be exhausting if you tried to accomplish this on your own. Advocacy is a tremendous benefit of membership for you and your business.

The Chamber uses policy statements as principles to guide us in advocacy efforts. The statements are guidance from our membership on issues that we may face during the coming year. They can also serve as goals for positive change that we hope to achieve. For example, last year we adopted a statement on diversity and inclusivity. I encourage you to look over the words, they matter.

In this issue of the Chamber News you'll find more information on our advocacy efforts, as well as a guide to your local representatives to the state legislature. Watch for information in the coming months from the chamber on activity taking place in Pierre. And if you see an issue that you'd like us to engage on, please contact our Public Affairs and Communications staff at the Chamber, or any member of the Issues Management Committee. We rely on your feedback to make good decisions for our membership.

Thank you for your membership - without your investment we could not accomplish this important work.

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