2014 Advocacy Agenda
We are advocating on your behalf to advance an agenda that seeks to improve the region’s business climate and competitiveness in five critical areas. A framework of our 2014 Agenda includes:
Talent: Building on the region’s greatest competitive advantage by strengthening state education, training, and retention efforts while improving access to top international talent.
- Immigration reform – Lead a national coalition of chambers of commerce working for legislation that expands temporary (H-1B) and permanent visas for skilled workers, entrepreneurs, and graduates.
- Charter school expansion – Implement a “floating cap” to increase the supply of charter schools where demand for them is high, to expand opportunity and close the achievement gap.
- Internship initiative – Expand the reach of the Chamber-Federal Reserve Bank of Boston Internship Collaborative and its InternHub.com website, to strengthen connections between employers and students.
Cost competiveness: Working to make state business tax policy and business costs more competitive with other states in order to drive job growth, investment, innovation, and expansion
- Business taxes – Work to improve state and city tax policy, by advancing pro-growth reforms proposed by the Chamber and preventing the adoption of uncompetitive tax policies.
- Employment costs – Advance the competiveness of Massachusetts employment costs, such as those related to unemployment insurance taxes.
- Health care costs – Make Massachusetts health care costs more competitive, while preserving the state’s leadership role in research and innovation, as its 2012 health care cost law is implemented.
Transportation and Development: Advancing transportation and development initiatives key to strengthening our region’s stance as a world-class destination to do business.
- Regional infrastructure – Work with leaders in business and government to expand international connections at Logan Airport and make improvements to the Port of Boston.
- Smart permitting – Advocate for permitting principles across city agencies that include enforceable deadlines, simultaneous agencies review, and clear schedules, making them easy to navigate while maintaining substantive standards.
- South Station expansion – Work with government and business leaders to increase rail connections and facilitate new waterfront development by expanding South Station.
Innovation: Advancing several key issues to help Greater Boston’s industries – both emerging and established – succeed in a global, knowledge-based economy.
- Financial services initiative – Strengthen the financial services sector by advancing competitive tax and regulatory policies, creating a structure for collaboration between the sector and state government, and promoting the sector’s economic and social impacts.
- Research funding – Work with university and business partners to secure increases in government research funding, which drive scientific and medical breakthroughs fueling the innovation economy.
Ballot questions: Working for the rejection of two ballot proposals that would have unfavorable consequences for our region’s competitiveness
- Gas tax indexing – Mobilize opinion against the fall 2014 ballot question that would repeal indexing of the gas tax to inflation, a policy critical to the funding of the state’s 2013 transportation bill.
- Nurse staffing ratios – Advocate for the defeat of the fall 2014 ballot question that would institute government-mandated nurse staffing ratios in hospitals, driving up costs and taking away health care leaders’ ability to effectively manage staffing.