2012 Legislative Agenda
2012 Legislative Agenda (Download Here)
The Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce is a member-driven organization that takes public policy direction from the priorities of its membership. The Chamber is the leading advocate for local business; therefore, part of the Chamber’s mission is to lead public and private interests in the Lake Havasu region to develop a climate in which business can create jobs and operate at a profit. In addition, the Chamber works diligently to enhance and maintain the unique lifestyle of rural Arizona and advocates heavily for issues that affect an economy centered primarily on the tourism industry and light manufacturing.
In order to complete this mission, the Chamber’s Governmental Affairs Committee reports on, analyzes and recommends action to the Board of Directors upon legislation, regulation and other governmental actions that comes to its attention.
State, congressional, county and local pieces of legislation are brought to the attention of the Committee through research by staff, Committee members, Chamber members, partner organizations and lawmakers themselves. Once brought to the Committee’s attention, the information is studied and analyzed. On occasion, the Committee will conduct a survey of the membership to assist in the process. Once research is completed, the Committee may develop a recommendation for the Board of Directors for its approval.
Once the Board of Directors makes a decision, Chamber staff can effectively advocate on behalf of the Chamber.
Membership on the Committee is limited to Chamber members in good standing and nonvoting liaisons from local and county government. The Committee Chairman and members are appointed by the Chairman and approved by the Board of Directors. Committee members are required to sign a commitment and conflict of interest agreement.
The Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce welcomes state legislators to the 1st session of the 50th Arizona Legislature. This agenda deals with state legislation, but also local and federal issues; therefore we congratulate new officials and thank those already serving in public office. Our member businesses and employees are eager to work with you in strengthening our local and state economies. Formed in 1970 and incorporated in 1971, the Chamber represents more than 700 businesses that employ over 20,000 workers in the greater Lake Havasu City area.
Additionally, our Chamber is actively involved in the Mohave County Chambers Coalition, a regional, governmental affairs organization of the chambers of commerce in Kingman, Bullhead City, Mohave Valley and other communities in Northwest Arizona; and the Local Chambers Committee of Arizona Chamber Executives. The Lake Havasu Area Chamber is a member of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the US Chamber of Commerce. However, the Chamber does not automatically align with any other organization’s policy or position on any issue.
ACTION STATEMENT: The Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce works closely with government and leadership at city, county, state and federal levels to ensure the business climate at the local level sustains a positive business outlook. The Chamber supports quality growth and works toward creating conditions for a thriving economy. It does this by providing its members with products and services which include the representation of the interests of business with government and taking political action on business-related issues.
The following position statements have been adopted by the Board of Directors of the Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce as recommended by the Governmental Affairs Committee, to be regarded as priorities of the business members of this organization.
HOSPITALITY/TOURISM: Hospitality and Tourism is currently considered the city’s leading industry and therefore, the Chamber makes issues related to this industry a priority. The Chamber advocates a strong partnership with the City Government, the Lake Havasu City Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Lake Havasu Hospitality Association to promote destination marketing of the community in the western states, across the country and throughout the world. Approximately 2,000 local residents are employed full- and part-time in this industry and $171 million was spent by travelers to Lake Havasu City in 2010 (Lake Havasu City CVB). Additionally, visitor spending produced $3.6 million in local tax revenues and $6.9 million in state tax revenues (Lake Havasu City CVB). The Arizona Office of Tourism also reports the London Bridge as being the number 2 private attraction in the state with 2.5 million visitors and Lake Havasu State Park being the 10th in a list of the 25 most visited Natural Attractions in the state.
The Chamber supports the continued funding of the Lake Havasu City Convention and Visitors Bureau through the Transient Occupancy Tax and the Bar and Restaurant Tax.
The Chamber supports the Lake Havasu City Convention and Visitors Bureau Destination Vision Plan (attached).
The Chamber supports the continued funding of the Arizona Office of Tourism’s work in promoting Arizona and urges the Arizona State Legislature to continue funding this agency whose work is vital to the state’s economic development.
The Chamber supports continued support and funding for improvements to Lake Havasu State Park and to area parks and trails operated and maintained by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
The Chamber supports the effort to keep all trails on BLM and Arizona State Trust lands open for recreational tourism use.
The Chamber supports the effort of Lake Havasu City, Mohave County and tourism stakeholders in fee minimization negotiations regarding the use of Lake Havasu with any/all governmental entities.
The Chamber opposes legislation that sweeps dedicated funds including the State Lakes Improvement Fund, for tourism-related, development/improvements into the state’s general fund.
The Chamber supports SB 1170 that provides tax incentives for multi media production in Arizona.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/PLANNING: Exceptional planning and development leads to positive growth and ultimately to increased property values, increased employment and job opportunities and to a higher quality of life for city residents.
The Chamber supports the continued funding of the Lake Havasu City Partnership for Economic Development through the Transient Occupancy Tax and the Bar and Restaurant Tax.
The Chamber supports legislation that preserves or enhances the state shared revenue model and opposes legislation that would eliminate or modify the state shared revenue formula and reduce revenues for the incorporated cities in Mohave County.
The Chamber supports legislation that will protect the City’s ability to offer tax incentives to facilitate economic development and opposes legislation that threatens that ability.
The Chamber supports legislation that preserves local control.
The Chamber supports the effort of the Arizona Commerce Authority and encourages the ACA to include projects and programs in rural Arizona.
The Chamber supports the Arizona Competitiveness Program and other incentives offered by the ACA http://www.azcommerce.com/incentives.aspx.
The Chamber supports legislation that creates incentives to bring new business to Arizona.
The Chamber supports economic development legislation that incentivizes employers to enhance current and create new jobs for Arizonans.
The Chamber supports legislation that streamlines the administrative processes necessary for acquisition, private sale or lease of property under control of the Arizona State Land Department so that the best use of the land can be obtained and opposes legislation that makes it more difficult to acquire or lease state lands for public and/or economic development purposes.
The Chamber supports legislation that provides compensation for public improvements made to state lands when auctioned.
The Chamber supports local and state legislation that allows for acquisition of water rights for commercial, industrial and residential development.
The Chamber supports legislation that provides incentives for film production/multi media production in Arizona.
The Chamber supports local preference initiatives in the award of contracts for Lake Havasu City, Mohave County, the Lake Havasu Unified School District, the WAVE JTED District, the Mohave County Community College District, and other local and regional governmental jurisdictions.
The Chamber supports legislation that would allow for Tax Increment Funding in Arizona.
The Chamber opposes legislation that sweeps dedicated funds developed to assist with economic development and planning within Arizona.
TRANSPORTATION/INFRASTRUCTURE: The Chamber supports planning and development of infrastructure needs to ensure adequate and safe transportation services for current and future growth.
The Chamber supports the acceleration of statewide highway and road construction to enhance commerce, with an emphasis toward Arizona’s rural highways being included in transportation funding plans.
The Chamber supports legislation that facilitates and funds regional transportation systems to serve the greater Mohave County area.
The Chamber opposes the sweep of Highway User Revenue Funds into the state’s general fund.
The Chamber supports research on the feasibility of a regional airport centrally located in Mohave County.
EDUCATION/WORKFORCE: The Chamber supports a quality public and charter school system and opportunities for quality higher education to provide our students and citizens with the opportunity to compete in a global market.
The Chamber supports legislation that will continuously improve education.
The Chamber supports the continued funding of the Joint Technical Education Districts in Arizona.
The Chamber supports the continuation of the Arizona School Tax Credit program.
Until the Legislature creates a comprehensive funding mechanism for all Arizona public schools, the Chamber supports funding through tax overrides.
The Chamber supports continued funding for Arizona’s community colleges.
The Chamber supports the Havasu Foundation for Higher Education in its establishment of a 4-year, residential campus of Arizona State University in Lake Havasu City.
The Chamber supports the Lake Havasu Hospitality Association’s development and establishment of training and education programs for those employed in the hospitality/tourism industry.
The Chamber supports HB 2397, Continuation of the AZ Board of Regents until 2022.
The Chamber supports HB 2463, that permits public school districts to join or maintain memberships in Arizona Chambers of Commerce.
ENVIRONMENT/ENERGY: The Chamber encourages legislation to ensure that environmental regulations support businesses while balancing and protecting Lake Havasu City’s unique quality of life.
Environmental legislation and regulation should not increase the administrative burden of unnecessary rules, regulations, or project delays which are cost-prohibitive for business.
The Chamber supports legislation that will remove barriers to and incentivize, rather than mandate, the expansion of clean and renewable energy so that Mohave County and Arizona can become leaders in job creation in this emerging industry.
The Chamber supports legislation that provides funding for public works projects to protect and enhance groundwater quality.
The Chamber supports local and state legislation with a focus on natural resources including Solar and Wind-generated power development.
The Chamber supports the continuation of development of and uranium mining in Mohave County, Arizona, and the surrounding counties in Arizona and Utah. The continuation of mining projects in this area has the potential to create nearly 1,100 jobs; $2 billion in federal and state corporate income taxes; and $9.5 million in claims payments and fees to local governments.
IMMIGRATION: The Chamber believes immigration issues should be resolved at the federal level and encourages programs that provide for an adequate legal workforce while maintaining the safety and integrity of our national borders and protects businesses that operate legally within the State of Arizona. However, until the Federal Government actively resolves the issue, the Chamber supports SB 1070.
REDISTRICTING: The Chamber supports an ongoing review of the Congressional map for newly formed District 4. Understanding the map has been approved by the Department of Justice, the Chamber believes the district is not a true “community of interest” and supports efforts to exclude the eastern, metropolitan areas of the Phoenix area that are part of the new district.
GAMING/RACINOS: The Chamber opposes legislation that would open casino style gaming and/or gaming at horse racing facilities in Arizona, outside of the current casinos operated by the state’s recognized Native American tribes.
HEALTHCARE: The cost, compliance and confusion regarding federal health care legislation are difficult for most businesses. The Chamber believes that health care costs can and should be reduced and opposes legislation that places the burden of health care costs on business. The Chamber opposes a “one size fits all”, over-regulated health insurance exchange imposed by the federal government.
The Chamber supports the assurance that all legal residents of Arizona have access to high quality health care and the development of market-based solutions to reduce the number the uninsured.
The Chamber supports the decrease of government cost-shifting by reducing incidents of compensated and under compensated care and supporting adequate state for AHCCCS in order to draw down federal matching funds.
The Chamber supports the promotion of free market health care services and state autonomy for health care in light of federal regulations.
The Chamber supports the development of an equitable civil litigation system that encourages medical professionals to practice in Arizona.
The Chamber opposes price control methods and marketing and rate restrictions along with costly coverage requirements and other government mandates.
The Chamber supports the promotion of wellness programs for both physical and behavioral health.
The Chamber opposes ambiguous regulations attached to compliance with Medical Marijuana legislation and supports closely monitored regulation of Medical Marijuana dispensaries. The Chamber also supports a statewide educational campaign to train business owners and managers on Medical Marijuana compliance.
FEDERAL DEBT: The (Lake Havasu Area) Chamber supports the U.S. Chamber’s position on federal debt which is as follows:
“The Chamber opposes the FY 2012 budget proposal because it would create an enormous expansion of the federal government, paid for with tax hikes on businesses and upper income individuals. Federal spending as a percentage of GDP remains high through the 10-year budget horizon, leading to trillions of dollars in additional deficits and increasing the level of public debt to 77% of GDP by 2021.
The proposal would offset much of the additional spending with massive tax hikes on businesses and higher income individuals, many of whom own the most successful U.S. small businesses that are taxed as individuals. Thus, the proposal would hinder the ability of businesses to grow and create jobs.
In lieu of a budget that provides for huge spending increases paid for with punitive tax increases that discourage saving and investment and slow job growth, the Chamber recommends that the Administration and Congress produce a budget plan that will get the US economy out of its current malaise and back on track for future growth.”
ELECTED OFFICIALS – US CONGRESS
US SENATOR JON KYL
2200 E. Camelback Rd., #120
Phoenix, AZ 85016
US SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN
5353 N. 16th St., #105
Phoenix, AZ 85016
US REPRESENTATIVE TRENT FRANKS – District Two
7121 W. Bell Rd.
Glendale, AZ 85308
ELECTED OFFICIALS – STATE OF AZ
GOVERNOR JAN BREWER
1700 W. Washington
Phoenix, AZ 85007
SENATOR RON GOULD – Lake Havasu City
1700 W. Washington, Senate Building #303
Phoenix, AZ 85007
REPRESENTATIVE DORIS GOODALE – Kingman
1700 W. Washington, House Building #310
Phoenix, AZ 85007
REPRESENTATIVE NANCY MCLAIN – Bullhead City
1700 W. Washington, House Building #344
Phoenix, AZ 85007
ELECTED OFFICIALS – MOHAVE COUNTY
SUPERVISOR DISTRICT ONE – District 1
GARY L. WATSON
700 W. Beale St.
Kingman, AZ 86401
SUPERVISOR DISTRICT TWO – District 2
1130 Hancock Road
Bullhead City, AZ 86442
SUPERVISOR DISTRICT THREE – District 3
BUSTER JOHNSON, Chairman of the Board
2001 College Drive
Lake Havasu City, AZ 86403
ELECTED OFFICIALS – LAKE HAVASU CITY
2230 N. McCulloch Blvd.
Lake Havasu City, AZ 86403
MAYOR MARK NEXSEN, firstname.lastname@example.org, 928-453-2290
VICE MAYOR DAVE MCATLIN, email@example.com, 928-453-5407
DON CALLAHAN, firstname.lastname@example.org, 928-680-1212
MARGARET NYBERG, email@example.com, 928-706-4401
SONNY BORRELLI, firstname.lastname@example.org, 928-854-2576
LEE BARNES, email@example.com, 928-855-1660
DEAN BARLOW, Dbarlow1@aol.com, 928-453-6310