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The Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii
e-Voice of Business
January 22, 2014

In this January 22, 2014 edition:

President's Message
Legislature Opens and Manufacturing on the Move 
Military Affairs Council Promotes Hawaii’s Strategic Military Value
Young Professionals Launches 2014 Professional Development Classes 

President's Message

Aloha Chamber Members:

Thanks to the participation of our wonderful members, sponsors, media partners (Honolulu Star-Advertiser and Hawaii News Now), Board of Directors, neighbor island chambers and Chamber staff, our inaugural "Chamber Week" was a huge success. 

We began the week with the "State of Business" panel discussion, which featured CNBC reporter Scott Cohn. He discussed CNBC’s survey, "America's Top States for Business 2013," and what our state needs to focus on to improve our national ranking. 

The "Walk Around at the State Capitol" attracted more than 100 members and our "Meet and Greet" with legislators had the largest attendance ever. In addition, we launched the Chamber's "Made-in-Hawaii Manufacturing Initiative" and hosted "Business Appreciation Day" in Tamarind Park, then concluded the week with a sign-waving event at the State Capitol to show appreciation for our military. 

During Chamber Week the "Voice of Business" was heard and our message was delivered. We are ready to lead change by shaping Hawaii's economic climate and improving Hawaii's standing as a great place to conduct business.

This is a start of many other initiatives coming up in 2014, which we will be sharing with you in the coming months. 

With the 2014 Legislature underway, it is imperative that the business community takes an active role in shaping our business climate and making it more conducive to creating jobs and attracting business. We look forward to hearing your voice at the Capitol.

Let's make 2014 a year of CHANGE!

Laulima & mahalo,
 
Sherry Menor-McNamara
President & CEO

Get Involved this Legislative Session

Legislature in Session
With the legislature opening last Wednesday, we have started reviewing the bills that affect business, both positively and negatively, and referring them to our policy committees. We encourage your participation to ensure the Voice of Business is heard by:
  1. Introducing yourself to your legislators. Make a phone call or send an email, if your time is limited. If you don’t know who your legislators are, click here and enter your home address.
  2. Participating in our policy committees, where you can get up-to-date briefings and help the Chamber set policy.
  3. Signing up to receive Action Alerts – via email, Twitter and Facebook – on bills that will impact business. When you see the Alert, just click to take action and have your voice heard by your legislators. 
  4. Getting involved in the political process. Attend fundraisers and town hall meetings. For more information on fundraisers or to sign up to receive Action Alerts, email Pono Chong.
INNOVATE Hawaii Helping Manufacturing in Our State
We continue our series on government agencies that have programs that can help your business. This week we highlight INNOVATE Hawaii (IH), a valuable agency and partner of the manufacturing industry in Hawaii.
 
IH is a federal program administered in Hawaii by the state agency, High Technology Development Corporation, aimed at helping small and mid-sized Hawaii manufacturers create and retain jobs, increase profits, and save time and money.
 
IH offers clients an abundance of unique and effective resources centered on five critical areas: technology acceleration, supplier development, sustainability, workforce development and continuous improvement. Acting as your general practitioner, IH provides your business with a wealth of knowledge and works to help your company meet industry-specific needs. IH’s management strongly believes that by helping local manufacturers accelerate innovation, they are able to help small and mid-size businesses not only prosper, but positively impact the local and global business economies.

Join the Military Affairs Council (MAC)

The announcement last week that the U.S. Navy was basing the new Virginia-Class submarine USS Mississippi and two destroyers at Pearl Harbor is good news. These moves will result in increasing the population of Navy families in Hawaii and boost work for the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard. 
 
In addition, it was announced that the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan was headed for Yokosuka, Japan to replace the USS George Washington, which is to proceed for its scheduled mid-life nuclear refueling complex overhaul in Virginia, and the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt is being relocated from Norfolk, VA to San Diego, CA. 
 
These moves are essential to securing maritime dominance in the Asia Pacific, which is crucial to keeping sea lanes in the South China free and open for global commerce and trade. It is a true benefit for Hawaii’s import-export businesses and promoting growth in emerging tourist markets in China and Southeast Asia. 
 
Other security-related actions ongoing include the proposal to relocate upwards of 2,700 U.S. Marines (and their families) from Okinawa to Hawaii, and the potential for strengthening the U.S. Army’s forward presence in Hawaii, despite actions being taken to reduce the Army’s end strength by some 80,000 soldiers.
 
The Military Affairs Council continues to focus on promoting Hawaii’s strategic military value as the forward deployed command and control center for the Asia Pacific and protecting Hawaii from competing mainland-based defense communities seeking to gain relevancy in the security strategy. The state can ill afford adverse actions on its defense industry, which accounts for infusing $14.7 billion annually into the economy and creating nearly 100,000 jobs for the workforce.           


Young Professionals Unveil 2014 Professional Development Classes 

The Chamber’s Young Professionals (YP) Program is gearing up for 2014 with a new set of professional development classes. With more than 75 YPs attending various classes in 2013, the YP Program is set for another great year to help grow and develop Hawaii’s upcoming business leaders. 
 
YP classes are based on feedback received from the Chamber’s Board of Directors, with an emphasis on differentiating young professionals in the workforce. With various business leaders teaching our classes, many current YPs have already taken these lessons learned to heart. Whether it’s learning a new skill or getting a refresher on others, our YPs are looking for ways to improve their competitive advantage in the workforce. 
 
Last week, David S. Chang, President & CEO of Chang Holding Company and past YP Chairman, led a class on “Highly Innovative Business Practices in 2014.”  David spoke on innovation in the workforce and identified successful traits of a young entrepreneur. He talked about how innovation can come from young professionals who can help their company get to the next level by identifying new solutions to challenges within an organization. 
 
For information on the YP Program, the professional development classes and ways to get involved or get your young professionals involved, click here, or contact Kyle at kokamura@cochawaii.org.
 

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