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Tue, Aug. 20

Prescott Chamber of Commerce a watchdog for businesses

Welcome to 2013! In last Tuesday's Daily Courier article, my New Year's hope was that every local business would be wildly successful this year. At the Prescott Chamber, we're going to do our best to make it successful for our members. Our 2013 Community Profile and Membership Directory is being mailed this week, along with 2013 membership decals for our members. Look for the maroon membership sticker on front doors, windows or other public areas, signifying that this business is a member of the Prescott Chamber of Commerce.

A chamber of commerce is many things. First, we are a "watchdog" organization for the business community. We monitor the actions of our elected officials and speak out on issues of importance to our members. Fortunately, there were not many major controversial business issues this past year on the local level. We've also been blessed at the state level to have excellent representation. When it comes to business issues, you can't do any better than Sen. Steve Pierce, Speaker of the House Andy Tobin and Rep. Karen Fann. Their support for those issues is unwavering.

The Arizona Legislature goes back to work on Monday, Jan. 14, and chambers around the state have signed on to a legislative agenda that covers a variety of topics of interest to businesses. On a daily basis, our agenda is used to support good bills and oppose bad bills. The larger chambers (Arizona, Phoenix and Tucson) have full-time staff members who follow every step on every bill being considered. They have our statewide agenda with them and they "watch our backs" on a daily basis. The non-metro chambers such as Prescott get regular updates on key bills and we are called into action to speak with our representatives as needed.

Gov. Jan Brewer also continues a tradition later this month as she brings her "State of the State" message to the Prescott area at noon on Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the Prescott Resort. Each year, the governor has taken her message to the public shortly after she delivers her comments on the opening day of the legislative session. The Prescott Chamber co-sponsors the governor's visit each year with the Prescott Valley Chamber. The lunch is open to the general public and all reservations are being taken by the Prescott Valley Chamber, 772-8857. Cost to attend is $25.

A chamber of commerce is often a visionary organization, and we take the opportunity to propose programs and ideas that could benefit the community. Last year, we proudly participated in the "Shop Small" campaign for the national Small Business Saturday program two days after Thanksgiving. We also worked with Prescott, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Prescott Valley to submit a proposal for the Arizona Cardinals' pre-season training camp, hoping to bring the Cardinals to this area each summer. A decision is expected next month.

A chamber is also an information source for the community. Last year, the chamber staff and volunteers responded to more than 20,000 phone calls and spoke with nearly 34,000 people who came to the chamber's Visitor Center. We also provided nearly 850 community information packets and our website was viewed by more than 150,000 people.

Welcome New Members

The Prescott Chamber welcomes the following new members: Helping Hands Coalition of America; Money in the Mail; Prescott Audubon Society; Artful Eye Jewelry Design Center; Kathy August, Keller-Williams Associate;; Granite Mountain Brewing; Classic Taxi; Juice N' More; Arizona Rangers; Farm Fresh Market; Human Resources Professional Group; The Marketing Guy - Rudy Nieblas; Salt River Project; How Do I Treat Naturally; Able Saw & Small Engine; Conklin & de Decker Associates, Inc.; and Southwest Wine Challenge.


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