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Category: Public Policy News

Here you’ll find out who’s making the decisions shaping our community: Policy-makers are always busy creating new ways to advance the Madison region. Stay informed on the latest policies that may impact the way you do business.

Photo by Richard Hurd

Madison’s Truax Field Chosen to Receive State-of-the-Art F-35A Aircraft

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Dec. 21, 2017)

Contact: Erik Greenfield, Communications Manager, 608-443-1952 (office), 608-669-7884 (cell)

MADISON – Today the United States Air Force announced it has selected Madison’s Truax Field, home of the 115th Fighter Wing of the Air National Guard, as one of two sites that will receive state-of-the-art, next-generation F-35A aircraft. Madison had been one of five finalist sites previously announced by the Air Force in December 2016. In response to today’s announcement, Chamber President Zach Brandon released the following statement:

“We are extremely proud and excited about today’s announcement for the 1,200 airmen of the 115th Fighter Wing, as well as for Greater Madison’s economy. The selection of the 115th to receive the F-35A ensures the benefits of the base – including $100 million in annual economic impact, emergency services for Dane County Regional Airport and tuition support for area students who serve in the Guard – will remain in Greater Madison for decades to come.

“This selection would not have been possible without years of commitment from the Wisconsin Air National Guard, the leadership of the 115th, the advocacy of Wisconsin’s congressional delegation, state leaders and local elected officials from Dane County, the Chamber’s partnership with the Badger Air Community Council and everyone who has shown their support through the Together Truax initiative. We are incredibly thankful to all of them for their hard work and dedication to making this day a reality.

“We look forward to welcoming the F-35A to Madison and continuing to stand with the men and women of the 115th.”

About the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce:
The Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business with nearly 1,300 organizations – ranging from one-person shops to corporations with more than 10,000 employees – working to bring the Greater Madison area to its full potential. The Greater Madison region is a leader in innovation. From cutting-edge technologies to distinctive retail shops to inventive services and products, our members vary greatly but are united by the region’s entrepreneurial spirit. More information can be found at greatermadisonchamber.com.

About Together Truax:
Launched in June 2016 by the Chamber, in partnership with the Badger Air Community Council, Together Truax is a program dedicated to assisting the effort to base the F-35A aircraft at Madison’s Truax Field. The initiative has included advocacy, marketing and lobbying, generating more than $100,000 in private investment and enlisting more than 2,100 supporters. More information can be found at togethertruax.com.

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Photo by Richard Hurd

Federal Grant Awarded to Study Local Literacy Innovation

Former UW-Madison researcher Dr. Jan Edwards was recently awarded a $3.3M grant from the federal Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences (IES) to fund a four year randomized trial study of ToggleTalk, a kindergarten/first grade supplemental curriculum published by Ventris Learning of Sun Prairie. ToggleTalk was developed with a prior IES grant by a team of national language & literacy experts with the express goal of helping educators reduce the Black White Achievement Gap in Reading. ToggleTalk has been shown in several studies to significantly boost student achievement on language & literacy measures, and the program has been well-received by students,  educators and parents in schools across the US.

Photo by Richard Hurd

Chamber Unveils Access Agenda

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (May 16, 2017)

Contact: Erik Greenfield, Communications Manager, 608-443-1952 (office), 608-669-7884 (cell)

MADISON – Today the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce unveiled its Access Agenda, a new two-year policy roadmap at the local, state and federal level to accelerate our advanced industries and bolster the state’s standing as a place of innovation and entrepreneurship. The Access Agenda is framed around the factors that drive companies to make decisions: access to talent, customers, infrastructure, supply chain and a livable community.

“Greater Madison is growing in advanced industries, population and recognition as a world-class place of innovation, and as our momentum continues, we must take collaborative and intentional action to ensure the advanced economy we are building works for everyone,” said Chamber President Zach Brandon. “Our Access Agenda doubles down on science, technology, innovation and investments in talent, as well as ensuring Greater Madison is an inclusive place where anyone can see opportunity and share in our region’s prosperity. With greater access, we will achieve a greater Madison.”

View the full Access Agenda at greatermadisonchamber.com/access

For a TruScribe-produced video introducing the Access Agenda, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1rsoD-i95M

About the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce:
The Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business with nearly 1,300 organizations – ranging from one-person shops to corporations with more than 9,500 employees – working to bring the Greater Madison area to its full potential. The Greater Madison region is a leader in innovation. From cutting-edge technologies to distinctive retail shops to inventive services and products, our members vary greatly but are united by the region’s entrepreneurial spirit. More information can be found at greatermadisonchamber.com.

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Photo by Richard Hurd

Business and Labor Closely Aligned on Madison Common Council Endorsements

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Feb. 22, 2017)

Contact: Erik Greenfield, Communications Manager, 608-443-1952 (office), 608-669-7884 (cell)

MADISON – Today the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors announced its endorsements for the Madison Common Council elections taking place April 4. With representation from many prominent and emerging companies throughout Greater Madison, an endorsement from the 48-member Chamber board signals a candidate’s strength on business issues and vision to grow Greater Madison’s economy.

The Chamber’s endorsement decisions closely mirror candidates endorsed by the Building Trades of South Central Wisconsin.

“In contested races for Madison Common Council, the choice for business and labor alike is clear. To have the endorsement of both the Chamber and Building Trades demonstrates a candidate’s understanding of how economies work and how best to foster job growth in our region,” said Chamber President Zach Brandon. “It is important that we not let up on the economic momentum we are seeing in Greater Madison, and these candidates have the right experience, passion and commitment to help us continue to drive that momentum.”

The Chamber endorsed the following candidates for Madison Common Council:

District 1: Barbara Harrington-McKinney
District 3: Amanda Hall
District 5: Shiva Bidar-Sielaff
District 7: Steve King
District 8: Zach Wood
District 9: Paul Skidmore
District 10: Maurice Cheeks
District 11: Arvina Martin
District 12: Larry Palm
District 13: Sara Eskrich
District 14: Sheri Carter
District 16: Denise DeMarb
District 19: Mark Clear
District 20: Matt Phair

The release from the Building and Construction Trades Council regarding their candidate endorsements is attached here.

About the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce:
The Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business with nearly 1,300 organizations – ranging from one-person shops to corporations with more than 10,000 employees – working to bring the Greater Madison area to its full potential. The Greater Madison region is a leader in innovation. From cutting-edge technologies to distinctive retail shops to inventive services and products, our members vary greatly but are united by the region’s entrepreneurial spirit. More information can be found at greatermadisonchamber.com.

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Photo by Richard Hurd

Chamber Urges Immediate Action to Avoid Multi-Year Road Work Delays

Today the Chamber sent a letter to state legislative leaders and Governor Walker, urging immediate action to avoid multi-year delays to critical road projects including I-39/90 and Verona Road. For business, economic, mobility and safety reasons, multi-year delays are just plain unacceptable.

Ideally, we would like to see long-term transportation finance reform to provide sustainable revenue sources for projects. In the short-term, however, immediate options must be considered, including use of the budgeted contingency bonding, to lessen the impact on these critical projects.

Read the Chamber’s complete letter here.