February 8, 2024
As the 2024 legislative session kicked off this week, chamber professionals from across Alabama gathered in Montgomery to hear from key leaders on the top issues facing our business community. Homewood Chamber Executive Director and 2024 Alabama Chambers Chair Meredith Drennen commented, "Today's Capitol Update presented by Alabama Trucking Association was a wonderful way for chamber executives across the state to hear from our governmental partners in Montgomery. We look forward to their successful session and further growth for Alabama businesses." The morning kicked off with Department of Commerce Secretary Ellen McNair encouraging local chambers to continue the great work they are doing and emphasizing that economic development is a collaborative effort.
Mark Closon, president and CEO of the day's sponsor, Alabama Trucking Association, shared some insight with our chamber representatives on the ties between commerce and transportation around the state. Each county across this state is impacted by the trucking industry with over 86% of Alabama communities depending exclusively on trucks to move their goods. Colson also added, "A united business community knows no bounds and central to creating a better climate for all businesses are local chambers of commerce. The trucking industry is proud to be a partner with local chambers to drive Alabama forward."
Executive Vice President of the Business Council of Alabama (BCA) Clay Scofield provided the keynote address for those in attendance. He touched on many topics affecting Alabama businesses and communities and highlighted the anticipated top issues this legislative session. Workforce development, school choice, and gambling were discussed with questions coming from the professionals in attendance. Discussion around the proposed housing and childcare tax credits was also held as was the growing concern statewide of unionization.
Sam Mashburn, director of business advocacy, for the Shoals Chamber commented, "The event provided me with an invaluable opportunity to speak directly with the policy makers and advocates tacking Alabama's most pressing business issues. I can't think of a better way to gain insights into policy issues affecting my members and connect with colleagues from around the state."
The morning concluded with a federal update from Brince Manning, senior manager of the Southeastern Region for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Brince discussed the near gridlock of Washington and the primary issues of concern to the business community across the nation.
"The Capital Update is information all Alabama Chambers need as we go forward into 2024." stated Rick Roden, president and CEO of the Mountain Lakes Chamber of Commerce. As session continues, Alabama Chambers will continue to provide updates to all our members through our biweekly Capital Briefings with BCA. All members are encouraged to participate.
The Chamber of Commerce Assoication of Alabama (Alabama Chambers) works to educate, advance and advocate for the more than 100 local chambers across the state who work tirelessly for the more than 38,000 businesses they represent.
Thank you to our sponsor: