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The Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii
e-Voice of Business
January 15, 2014

In this January 15, 2014 edition:

President's Message
Chamber Week Activities Continue – Join us!
Hawaii Air Guard has Ally in New SECAF
Join us for Business After Hours

President's Message

Aloha Chamber Members:

Last Friday, Governor Abercrombie proclaimed this week as Chamber Week. As we have been promoting, every day this week we have been featuring a different activity that supports our advocacy efforts. 
 
This initiative also coincides with today’s opening of the 2014 Legislature. During the next few months, your Chamber will be tracking thousands of bills and playing defense against those that are harmful to Hawaii's businesses. At the same time, we'll also be executing an offensive game plan with our first-ever "Business Package" that encourages all parties to work together to lower the cost of doing business, spur economic development and invest in our future.
 
Equally important to our advocacy efforts is YOUR VOICE. The key is ENGAGEMENT by our members, so that the Voice of Business is heard loud and clear before legislation is drafted and while it’s being considered. Our strength is in our numbers. We will utilize our "Action Alert" system and other communication tools, so you can easily and effectively share your views and opinions with us, as well as directly with lawmakers. 
 
The responses we have been receiving related to the initiatives we have been announcing have been very encouraging and show that many of our members are supportive of these aggressive new initiatives and have pledged their support to help us reach our goals. This is indeed encouraging and we wholeheartedly look forward to many more of you stepping forward when called upon to be a catalyst for change and a strong voice at the State Capitol.
 
We are keenly aware of your busy schedules, which is why we developed our Action Alerts system so that the means by which you can make a difference will only take a few minutes of your time. But, those minutes will be crucial, as we continue to build a better business climate and a thriving economy.
 
Click here to see what has been in the media recently about Chamber Week and our Business Package. 

Laulima & mahalo,
 
Sherry Menor-McNamara
President & CEO

Chamber Week Activities Continue– Join us! 

We are excited to continue the first-ever Chamber Week and invite you and your staff members to attend the remaining events this week, many of which are at no cost to participants. For a full schedule of Chamber Week events and details on how to register, click here

Special Mahalo to our Chamber Week Sponsor Matt Delaney and Hawaii HR and all of our sponsors for their support of Chamber Week. 

Chamber’s Legislative Package
For the first time, The Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii will be proposing a legislative business package, proposed by members and approved by our policy committees, which are open for participation by all members. To view the package, click here.
 
Recap of State of Business and Manufacturing in Hawaii
Chamber Week has kicked off with several successful events thanks to you, our members.  At Monday’s “State of Business: The Economy of Small Business,” over 70 in attendance had the opportunity to hear and see CNBC’s Scott Cohn, Skyped live from New York, speaking on why Hawaii rated last on CNBC’s “2013 America’s Top States to do Business” study.  Attendees asked questions of Scott, as well as panelists Ned Monroe (National Association of Manufacturers-NAM), Ina Chang (Aloha Data Services) and Ben Ancheta Jr. (Proservice Hawaii). 
 
On Tuesday we hosted two events, starting off with Leg 101 in the morning for members to learn about the legislative process and, that evening, our Manufacturing Launch. This event was the public launch of our Manufacturing Initiative headed by Bernie Coleman of Pacific Allied Products, as well as our partners, Hawaii Food Manufacturers Association and the Hawaii Fashion Incubator.  Event featured comments by NAM’s Ned Monroe, in town from Washington DC, and a preview of our Manufacturing website portal, which goes live later this month.  

Hawaii Air Guard has Ally in New SECAF

Defense News reported that Deborah Lee James, newly sworn Secretary of the Air Force, has taken the lead in promoting better use of guard and reserve forces. “Effective utilization of our reserve components is critical if we want to get the best defense for our nation…,” said James in addressing members of the National Commission on the Structure of the Air Force. The Commission is to make recommendations to President Obama and the Congressional armed services committees next month on whether, and how, the Air Force should be modified to best fulfill current and anticipated mission requirements in a manner consistent with available resources.
 
The Budget Control Act of 2011 has forced the Air Force to reduce personnel by upwards of 25,000 during the next five years, and the active Air Force component has been proposing to focus on cutting Guard and Reserve units. This would place the Hawaii Air National Guard (HIANG) with its fleet of KC 135s, C-17s and F-22s at risk.           
 
James is no stranger to the National Guard and Reserve components as she served as the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs from 1993-1998 during the Clinton Administration. She has worked extensively with Congress, state governors, the business community, military associations, and international officials and is well-versed on Guard and Reserve issues.
 
James stated, “The Air Force is the ‘super star’ among the military services in the use of Reserve components, and those components will remain critical.”  She specifically highlighted intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) and cyber operations as two growth areas for the Reserve components, both well-suited for Hawaii and its air guard. HIANG will partner with the University of Alaska in FAA’s testing of the use of unmanned aerial vehicles. 


Register Now for Business After Hours

The Chamber’s first Business After Hours networking event of the year will be hosted at the Ohana Honolulu Airport Hotel on Thursday, February 6, from 5:30-7:30 pm. Join us for an evening of valuable networking and sharing of information with other professionals in Hawaii. This relationship-building event, held in a relaxed environment, benefits attendees and their companies through added contacts and resources.
 
Our last Business After Hours event, drew more than 100 professionals who engaged in meaningful conversation, shared ideas and established productive business connections while learning about other local businesses. For photos from our last event, check out our Facebook page here. As a Chamber member, we invite you and your employees to take advantage of Business After Hours. 
 
Sponsorships are still available, and are a valuable way to gain exposure to Hawaii’s business community. For more information click here.
 
Event registration is $25, which includes heavy pupus and two complimentary drink tickets. Click here to register. Deadline to register is January 31. If registering after the deadline, please note a $15 additional fee will be incurred. 
 
For more sponsorship and registration information, please contact Kyle Okamura, or call at 545-4300 x317. 

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