Chamber Corner

MAST welcomes Congressman Reed

The Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier was pleased this week to host Congressman Tom Reed and his Manufacturing Advisory Board. Congressman Reed serves on the House Manufacturing Caucus. The meeting included representatives from a number of manufacturing firms in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany Counties as well as Jamestown Community College.

The roundtable discussion included a variety of topics such as tax reform, federal regulations affecting business, utility costs and workforce development. In addition, participants were able to tour JCC’s Manufacturing Technology Institute.

“We look forward to working with Congressman Reed as the House Manufacturing Caucus develops. This is a great opportunity for manufacturers in our region to have a voice in policy decisions that affect local companies,” MAST Executive Director Todd Tranum said.

Congressman Reed was elected to the new 23rd District of New York last November following Congressional redistricting. He previously served in the former 29th District. A native of Corning, he built a private law practice and other businesses dealing with real estate and mortgage brokerage.

NRG needs our support now

State Senator Cathy Young is encouraging all local businesspeople and residents to make their voices heard on the NRG repowering plan. Sen. Young this past week indicated that the state Public Service Commission will be making a decision on the plan in the near future. As a result, she is calling for letters of support now to Governor Cuomo and to PSC Chairman Garry Brown.

Sen. Young said letters should be clear that local communities stand in support of upgrades to the Dunkirk power plant and that the PSC analysis should take into consideration a broader economic benefits analysis as a significant factor in its final determination.

Letters can be sent to Governor Andrew Cuomo, Executive Chamber, NYS Capitol, Albany NY 12224 or to Chairman Garry A. Brown, NYS Public Service Commission, Agency Bldg 3, Empire State Plaza, Albany NY 12223. They should reference Case # 12-E-0577.

Potential closure of the NRG plant in Dunkirk would result in a substantial loss to Chautauqua County, both in terms of good paying jobs and tax revenue. The Chamber/MAST strongly encourages letters of support for the repowering of the NRG plant.

Chamber Membership Blitz continues

The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce has one week remaining in its 2013 Membership Blitz. If you know of a business that has not joined the Chamber, now is a great time to encourage them to get involved. Special prize packages will be drawn for new members later this month. New members who join before May 10 will be entered into a drawing for these prizes from the Chamber: a Sapphire Gem Sponsorship valued at $1,000, their next year’s membership free or a free pass to all Chamber events for a year (excluding the golf tournament and annual banquet). Dozens of additional prizes have been donated by friends of the Chamber as well. All of the prizes will be awarded during the upcoming Experience Chautauqua Networking Event May 16 in Bemus Point.

A number of Chamber members and potential new members turned out this past week during a series of three Business After Hours events in Jamestown, Chautauqua and Dunkirk.

For more information or to join the Chamber, visit www.chautauquachamber.org.

Networking event May 16 at Lawson Boating Center

The brand new Lawson Boating Heritage Center will be the site for the next Experience Chautauqua Networking Event coming up May 16. The Center is the former LS Aero Marine at 73 Lakeside Drive in Bemus Point. A non-profit organization, it is dedicated to preserving, displaying and presenting the boating history of Chautauqua Lake. While the museum is still in its infancy, the building has a venerable heritage as a center for boating on Chautauqua Lake.

This networking event offers Chamber members an opportunity to view the museum and learn more about the boating history on the lake, while also getting to know other Chamber business people. It is sponsored by: Affinity One Federal Credit Union, Chautauqua Marina Inc., Jamestown Jammers Baseball, M & T Bank and UBS Financial Services.

The cost for this event is $8 for pre-registered guests or $10 at the door if you have not registered. For more information or to register, call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101 or visit our events calendar online at www.chautauquachamber.org/events.