AdvocacyWe 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.
Elkhart Mayor’s Office
Elkhart City Council
Elkhart County Commissioners
Elkhart County Council
Indiana General Assembly, officials representing Elkhart County:
- Senator Ryan Mishler, Dist 9
- Senator Joe Zakas, Dist 11
- Senator Blake Doriot, Dist 12
- Representative Timothy Wesco, Dist 21
- Representative Curt Nisly, Dist 22
- Representative Doug Miller, Dist 48
- Representative Wes Culver, Dist 49
- Representative David Ober, Dist 82
- Be informed. Do your own thinking and research. Above all, be accurate.
- Know the strengths and weaknesses of your issue.
- 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.
- Understand the law- and policy-making process.
- 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 ___.”
- Where possible, refer to the bill or ordinance number of the legislation of interest.
- Be clear and concise in explaining how the proposed or existing legislation affects your business and why you support or oppose it.
- 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.”)
- Discuss only one issue per call, email or letter.
- 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.