The 2010/2011 Action Report — Gilroy Chamber of Commerce
By Susan Valenta, President/C.E.O.
The Government Relations Committee (GRC) has taken the lead in representing business on a local, regional, and state level. For the past two years, Greg Gallup (Cintas Corporation) has chaired the GRC. As a major employer, Cintas understands the importance of a business-friendly environment so that the economy can grow and businesses can prosper.
At the November meeting, a White Paper was presented to give a recap of the GRC actions from 2010 to present. The Gilroy Chamber of Commerce takes pride in the efforts and the successful outcomes of legislation fought on behalf of our businesses.
Beginning in January 2012, Christi Garcia (Christi Garcia LPL Financial) will Chair the GRC continue with the legislative advocacy. The following is a brief snapshot of the actions over the past two years as well as the presentations that took place at the monthly meetings:
2011 Chamber Positions
Oppose AB 10 (Alejo) – Minimum wage hike with annual California CPI indexing. Failed at State level.
Chamber approved a loan for PAC start-up expenses not to exceed $5,000 payable back to the Chamber within three years.
408/449 Overlay – Chamber supported overlay recommendation. PUC/State approved.
Gilroy Chamber sent a letter to GUSD expressing that the Chamber considers education a high priority and that there was an interest in continuing the conversation in finding a solution to the state budget.
Gilroy Chamber recommended approval of County redistricting Map 1 and opposing Map 5. – Map 1 selected by the County Board of Supervisors
Oppose – Gilroy Chamber opposed SB 653 (which evolved to SB 1 X 23) – a local taxing authority measure – Failed at the State level.
Oppose –Gilroy Chamber opposed SB 469, a land use issue that created another unnecessary layer of government that were already handled on a local level. Failed at the State level.
Support – Gilroy Chamber of Commerce recommended that Gilroy be aligned with inland regions and communities of interest on the Senate district lines.
Support – Gilroy Chamber of Commerce recommended approval of the draft Habitat Conservation Plan with caveats. A letter to Council addressed those concerns. City Council approved moving forward with Draft Plan.
Gilroy Chamber re-affirmed that the organization is in opposition to Card Check in any form. Bills vetoed by Governor Jerry Brown or failed at the Senate level.
Recap of 2011 Presenters:
October High Speed Rail – Don Dey
September Santa Clara County Habitat Conservation Plan: Speakers: Ken Schreiber, Santa Clara County HCP/NCCP; Stan Ketchum, City of Gilroy; Supervisor Mike Wasserman, County of Santa Clara
July Panel Presentation – Santa Clara County Habitat Conservation Plan: Speakers: Ken Schreiber, Santa Clara County HCP/NCCP; Rob Eastwood, County Planning; Jennifer Williams, Santa Clara County Farm Bureau; Kristi Abrams, City of Gilroy; and Jeff Martin, Land Owner.
June High Speed Rail Visioning – Don Dey
May Gilroy Unified School District – Dr. Debbie Flores
Santa Clara County Redistricting – Jane Howard
April 408/669 Area Code Discussion – Katherine Stokes Morehouse, Regulatory Analyst, Communications Division, California PUC
March Presentation – Habitat Conservation Plan, Jennifer Williams, Santa Clara County Farm Bureau; Ken Schreiber, Santa Clara Valley Habitat Conservation Plan.
Presentation – Santa Clara Valley Water District, Don Gage, Chair
February Presentation – Gilroy Climate Action Plan, Stan Ketchum, City of Gilroy
Presentation – Habitat Conservation Plan, Stan Ketchum, City of Gilroy
January High Speed Rail Panel – Steve Geil (Fresno EDC); Jessica Zenk (Silicon Valley Leadership Group; Ben Tripousis, City of San Jose, Transportation; Dave Mansen, San Jose to Merced Section of HSR, Gary Kennerley, Program Manager, San Jose to Merced HSR
2010 Chamber Positions
February Gilroy Coalition for Stronger Economic Development formed
March Oppose – Proposition 16 (PG&E) – Ballot measure failed.
April Oppose – AB2483 (Water Act, SCVWD) – Legislation failed to move forward.
Oppose – Alcohol-Related Harm and Damage Services Act of 2010 (Legislation not able to move forward)
July Support letter to California High Speed Rail requesting that economic impacts, urban decay, and traffic impacts be included in the Gilroy portion of the Rail alignment considerations, and that the CAHSR approve and fully fund the City of Gilroy’s funding request for local review of the project’s impacts.
August Support – Proposition 23 – would have suspended air pollution control laws under AB 32 – measure failed with 62% of voters opposing.
Support – Proposition 22 — Prohibits the State from Borrowing or Taking Funds Used for Transportation, Redevelopment, or Local Government Projects and Services – measure passed with 60.7% of voters supporting.
September Support – Proposition 26 – Required supermajority Vote to Pass New Taxes and Fees Act – measure passed with 52.5%
Endorsed for City Council: Dion Bracco, Russ Valiquette, and Paul Kloecker
Endorsed for State Assembly: Robert Bernosky
Oppose – Proposition 25 — Majority Vote for the Legislature to Pass the Budget Act – measure passed with 55.1% of voters in favor.