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 four 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.