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Advocacy

Advocacy

We believe that chamber engagement in economic development and legislative issues echoes our members' collective voice and demonstrates strong leadership. This in turn positively impacts the health of our local business climate.

Economic Development/Legislative Affairs Council
The Mission of our Economic Development/Legislative Affairs Council is to activate and coordinate government and other resources to be responsive to economic development needs.

Our goals are:
Promotion - Identify and promote the positives businesses find attractive, including tax structure and amenities for management and workers

Growth - Identify the negatives discouraging business growth and relocation. Work with government to improve the business environment

Cooperation - Assist other economic development organizations


Chamber members are always encouraged to contact their elected officials directly to discuss issues impacting their businesses. For your convenience, elected officials and web links are listed below. If you are not sure who your elected representatives are, you can find out here.

For Elkhart
Elkhart Mayor’s Office
Elkhart City Council
Elkhart County Commissioners
Elkhart County Council

Indiana General Assembly, officials representing Elkhart County:

United States Congress, officials representing Elkhart County:
Tips for contacting your legislator and advocating your issue
  1. Be informed. Do your own thinking and research. Above all, be accurate.
  2. Know the strengths and weaknesses of your issue.
  3. Understand the importance of compromise and building consensus, particularly when it comes to funding. Your issue is not the only good cause needing new, sustained or increased funding.
  4. Understand the law- and policy-making process.
  5. When addressing your state and federal legislators, the proper salutations are “Dear Senator ___” or “Dear Representative ___.” When writing your local elected official, the proper salutations are “Dear Mayor ___” and “Dear Councilor ___.”
  6. Where possible, refer to the bill or ordinance number of the legislation of interest.
  7. Be clear and concise in explaining how the proposed or existing legislation affects your business and why you support or oppose it.
  8. Request that your elected official take specific action by telling him or her the outcome you seek. (“I’d like you to vote in support of HB 1011.”)
  9. Discuss only one issue per call, email or letter.
  10. For all communication, don’t assume the elected official knows you are from his/her district. State that you are a constituent or resident, and always include your mailing address and telephone number.
Tips adapted from the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.

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Elkhart Chamber
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Latest News

02/03/2017 - Chamber announces legislative positions

The Board of Directors for the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce has identified these Regional priorities for the 2017 Legislative session:

01/30/2017 - The road to roads

Our Chamber has advocated for long-term, dedicated highway funding for a long time.

01/23/2017 - Our modern Chamber will look like a modern Chamber

As you know we have a very effecting and influential Chamber of Commerce.

01/16/2017 - New year = new legislature

The year is still early enough that we are still saying “happy new year” to each other.

01/09/2017 - Not done yet

Faster and safer, but not fast enough or safe enough.

01/03/2017 - Interns help you and the community

Right now, our companies are struggling to find skilled workers

12/19/2016 - Our volunteers are great

Last week, I thanked our outgoing and incoming members of our Board of Directors.

12/12/2016 - Farewell and Welcome

Later this week, we will be transitioning our Board of Directors.

11/28/2016 - Overtime rule blocked

A federal judge blocked the new overtime rule that was set to take effect December 1.

11/21/2016 - Power of the purchase

It’s Thanksgiving week. I’m looking forward to eating too much and taking part in some of the other festivities

07/18/2016 - Pence announcement … a job for you

Late last week, Donald Trump tapped our Governor, Mike Pence, as his running mate for the Republican Presidential ticket.

07/11/2016 - While you were away…

As some of you know, I was out of the office for the past couple weeks. Part of that time, I was in Yellowstone National Park, where cell phone signals don’t exist.

06/27/2016 - Golf Outing Door Prize Winners

06/06/2016 - It is time for vibrancy

Remember when we told you about the huge community kick-off event for the Vibrant Communities initiative?

05/23/2016 - Wish I had paid more attention

Back when I was young and immortal, I didn’t think about my financial future too much.

05/16/2016 - Getting lean

Some of you know about how your Chamber helps companies cut the inefficiencies out of their process

05/09/2016 - Leaders never really graduate

Businesses, and communities for that matter, are looking for leaders

05/02/2016 - Building downtown

Your Chamber has agreed to lead downtown economic development for the City of Elkhart.

04/25/2016 - Non-motorized moving

Some of you have stopped by the Chamber and seen my bicycle parked in my office. I like to ride my bike to work when I can.

04/18/2016 - A rose by any other name

We are proud to announce that your Chamber is the home of the Center for Business Excellence. The Center will help large and small companies improve their process and reduce waste

04/11/2016 - Now it’s up to us

Last week I had the opportunity to participate in a ceremonial bill signing with Governor Mike Pence. He signed the legislation that fully funded the Regional Cities grants.

04/05/2016 - Catalytic Leadership Starts Here

It is a challenge to find a leader. It is a challenge to BE a leader.

04/04/2016 - Elkhart Leadership Academy - Guiding Our Future Leaders

For almost 30 years, the Elkhart Leadership Academy has been guiding future community leaders.

04/02/2016 - Students Complete 2016 Young Entrepreneurs Academy

The Elkhart Chamber Young Entrepreneurs Academy will graduate its 5th class of students in May, a total of over 60 graduates since the program began in 2012.

04/01/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Anji Metzler, First Call Staffing

04/01/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Hugh Johnson, J2 Marketing, LLC

02/01/2016 - Working Together to Transform our Region

Regional Cities and Vibrant Communities are putting the Elkhart area at the forefront of new economic development

01/29/2016 - Ambassador of the Month

Lori Swihart, WSBT Radio Group

12/01/2015 - A STRONG year for our CHAMBER and our COMMUNITY

2015 was an active year in the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce.

12/01/2015 - Downtown Elkhart

Thanks to SoMa, downtown Elkhart became a more attractive place in 2015 with new features that guide visitors to restaurants, attractions and parking and add colorful flair in unexpected spots.

12/01/2015 - Transportation

The Chamber has long been recognized as a transportation advocate. These key projects will be completed in 2015.

12/01/2015 - Indiana Toll Road Travel Plaza Master Plan focus of Breakfast

The Indiana Toll Road spans 157 miles across Northern Indiana from Ohio to the Illinois state line and is a major economic corridor.

12/01/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Centier Bank

The Greater Elkhart Chamber Education/Career Development Council has presented their 3rd Quarter Business and Education Partnership Award to Centier Bank.

12/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Evelyn Johnston, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate Services

11/09/2015 - Non-Profit agencies impacted by local purchases

When local businesses and their employees contribute to local non-profit organizations, everyone wins.

11/05/2015 - The Impact Beyond the Purchase

Beyond every action, every single dollar spent, there is a ripple effect.

11/04/2015 - Not what you buy, but where

When you buy from a local company, you are supporting the employees who live in your community.

11/02/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Elkhart Public Library

The Greater Elkhart Chamber Education/Career Development Council has presented their 2nd Quarter Business and Education Partnership Award to the Elkhart Public Library.

11/02/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Spherion Staffing, Hugh Johnson

11/02/2015 - Business and Education Partnership Award Given to Elkhart Public Library

Elkhart Public Library given Business and Education Partnership Award

10/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Beacon Consulting, Tom Miller

09/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Loretta Salchert, Ribbon of Hope

08/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Shelly Crawford, INOVA Federal Credit Union

07/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Michael Wolff, Life Style Photography

06/01/2015 - Ambassador of the Month

Dave Herrli, GLASS DOCTOR

05/27/2015 - Education Council looks for partners in welcoming new educators

Sponsorships are needed for the canvas gift bags and items to fill the bags.

05/01/2015 - Help for your business

Business resources available with NCI, SCORE, SBDC, & EDC.

- Northern Indiana Coalition of Chambers 2016 Legislative Positions

The Northern Indiana Coalition of Chambers works together on issues of importance to the Northern Indiana Region. The Six-County coalition has identified these four Regional priorities for the 2016 Legislative session:

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