2018 Agenda for Prosperity

A primary function of the Lancaster Chamber is to advance initiatives impacting business and advocate on behalf of the business community. In 2018, we will advance an agenda that seeks to improve the County's business climate and competitiveness in key strategic areas.

Our efforts will focus on positively impacting regional, state and federal issues relevant to the business community and effectively communicating our efforts to increase grassroots participation.

PRIORITY ISSUES:
Workforce, Taxes, Regulation, Transportation

  1. WORKFORCE
    Support the development of a qualified workforce to ensure employers have the talent they need to stay competitive.
  2. TAXES
    Support state tax reform that would lower the corporate net income tax rate.
  3. REGULATION
    Consider and respond to legislation and regulations mandated on businesses, local government, non-profits and education.
  4. TRANSPORTATION
    Support public policy and taxation options that help to develop the state's transportation systems.

Download our 2018 Agenda for Prosperity here

Economic Engine - A prosperous community driven by a healthy economy, thriving  business and an enhanced quality of place.

POLICY:

  • Build Pennsylvania's Reputation as a State to do Business - Support legislative measures that would positively impact our business climate and strengthen our ability to create, attract, retain and expand jobs.
     
  • State Budget - Encourage responsible stewardship of state finances and a structurally sound, on-time state budget without placing undue tax burdens on the business community or reducing the effectiveness of essential state programs.
      - Specific - Support a two-year budget cycle and zero-based budgeting.
     
  • State Tax Competitiveness - Support efforts toward development of a tax structure that provides certainty, transparency and incentive for businesses to grow.
     - Specific - Support reducing the Corporate Net Income Tax to a competitive rate.
     
  • Property Tax Reform - Evaluate, and if appropriate, support efforts aimed at comprehensive property tax reform that are in the best interest of citizens and businesses.
      - Specific - Evaluate the impact for businesses if the proposal calls for an increase to sales tax or personal income tax.
     
  • State Employee, School District and Municipal Pension Reform - Support further reforms to the unsustainable state employee, school district and municipal pension systems to reduce cost-drivers for school districts and municipalities while making them comparable with the private sector.  
     
  • Monitor and Respond to Regulations - Work with legislators and regulatory bodies to share business perspective as regulations are considered to ensure they are not overly and unnecessarily burdensome.
     
  •  Navigate Implemented Regulations - Help navigate various regulations, primarily labor and wage regulations. In addition, as issues arise for specific industries or businesses, help facilitate or alleviate the effects of regulation on business.

Well Being of People -  A community that offers individuals a sense of opportunity for now and in the future to meet their basic needs.

POLICY:

  • Coalition for Sustainable Communities - Continue to partner with the Coalition for Sustainable Communities (CSC) and other stakeholders to advance a common agenda promoting municipal financial health.
      - Specific - Support reforms aimed at reducing municipal pension debt and amending Act 111 (the act governing public safety employee collective bargaining) with reasonable and commonsense reforms while retaining the right to binding arbitration on a more balanced playing field.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP:

  • Housing Availability and Affordability - Support expanding the availability of housing options to the Lancaster County workforce and continue to work with the Coalition for Sustainable Housing to determine solutions to increase housing affordability.
      - Specific - Evaluate and, as appropriate, support projects that will increase available housing options in Lancaster County and encourage municipal zoning decisions that support Smart Growth.
     
  • Planning for the Future - Engage with the Lancaster County Planning Commission to ensure the business voice is included in the development of places2040, a comprehensive plan and vision for Lancaster County.

Physical Environment - A community that recognizes and embraces the concept of sustainability of the physical environment by participating in the activities and planning.

POLICY:

  • Transportation Priorities - Prioritize and mobilize the community to continue advocating for the County’s top priority infrastructure needs and projects for the LongRange Transportation Plan. 
     
  • Transportation Funding - Support alternative sources of funding for transportation infrastructure to ensure continued investment in the statewide system.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP:

  • Countywide Clean Water - Advocate on behalf of business as the Chesapeake Bay program advances and make businesses aware of the impacts at a local level. 
      - Specific - Working with the Clean Water Partners, advance vision and objectives for a broad, prioritized framework to rapidly increase clean-up efforts for streams in Lancaster County.

Education - An education system that provides avenues for individuals to find a good job with family-sustaining wages, prepares students to be engaged in the community and provides a skilled workforce aligned with the employment needs of the business community.

POLICY:

  • Reform Education for the Future - Advance reforms that would allow education systems to consider the economic realities of today, promoting budgetary decisions that are in the best interest of the students and providing consistency, stability and predictability in funding to educational institutions.
     
  • Workforce Development - Support enhancement of programs and projects that strengthen the link between publicly-funded workforce development initiatives and economic development.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP:

  • Collaborate with Education - Develop a prepared, productive and skilled workforce by maximizing the opportunities for business and education to collaborate on curriculum development and achieving student outcome goals. Provide teachers and school leaders with opportunities to better connect with the business community and provide connections to real-work place experiences.
       - Specific - Provide business perspective on career planning within our local school districts and share information on resources available to students and educators from the business community.
     
  • Promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Initiatives -  Support the promotion of STEM in K-12 and post-secondary education that prepares students to become innovators and problem-solvers.
      - Specific -  In coordination with the STEM Alliance, facilitate the advancement of a plan for rational career exploration in STEM careers.

Community and Culture - A prosperous community that offers residents opportunities to expand their horizons through experiences that enrich their lives and actively engage them in the community.

POLICY:

  • Elected Office Information - Provide the community with an opportunity to hear from candidates in contested races on their views related to business issues. In addition, encourage local business and community leaders to consider candidacy for public office

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP:

  • Workplace Diversity and Inclusion - Support and leverage a diverse workforce and inclusive business practices as a competitive advantage for attracting and retaining talent for Lancaster County businesses.
      - Specific - Advance a strategic plan for immigrant integration.

Health and Safety - A healthcare system that provides individuals with options to access healthcare and that encourages individuals to make health decisions to be able to live life to the fullest

POLICY:

  • Affordable Care Act - Support revisions to the Affordable Care Act that will improve the system and repeal provisions such as the excise tax, medical device tax and the health insurance tax. 
     
  • Health Care Spending - Support improved flexibility for taxpreferred accounts for health care spending like FSAs, HSAs and HRAs.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP:

  • Joining Forces - Engage with the Joining Forces coalition to educate employers on the opioid and heroin crisis and  provide resources, best practices and workplace policies.