MOLINE, ILLINOIS (January 13, 2021) — As the 117th Congress and General Assemblies in Iowa and Illinois return to work, the Quad Cities Chamber is releasing its 2021 regional advocacy priorities. The Chamber’s priorities are member-driven; its team will provide regular opportunities for businesses to give input on legislative issues through surveys, petitions and more. The Chamber remains committed to advocating for public policies at the local, state and federal level that enhance our economic competitiveness, increase investment and benefit our members and regional economy.
“These priorities are a crucial component in advancing our region’s economic goals,” Chamber President and CEO Paul Rumler said. “As the voice of our regional business community, our team will advocate for these priorities at every level of government and keep our members informed on issues that will impact their ability to be successful as we return to normal business operations following the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Key 2021 regional advocacy priorities include:
- Regional outlook: The Quad Cities is strongest when municipalities and counties throughout the region work together. The Chamber will continue to advocate for the establishment of a bi-state regional funding mechanism between the Iowa and Illinois Quad Cities and encourage elected officials at all levels to consider regional impacts of legislation.
- COVID-19 recovery: 2020 brought unprecedented challenges for businesses and communities alike. In 2021, the Chamber will continue to advocate for federal and state legislation that provides necessary financial relief to employers and their employees so they remain viable during COVID-19 mitigations and can effectively return to business as soon as possible.
- Competitive tax policy: Living in a bi-state community presents unique challenges. To foster a healthy business environment for the Quad Cities region, the Chamber will advocate for tax reform that creates a level playing-field for businesses to operate on both sides of the river. This includes working with legislative leaders to implement a regional approach to minimum wage increases and opposing legislation that levies additional taxes on the business community.
- Economic development: The growth, recruitment, and retention of area businesses remains a top priority for the Chamber in 2021. Protecting economic development incentive programs that stimulate economic growth, encouraging investment in technology and innovation, and supporting tax-credit programs are all significant ways to ensure our regional economy continues to grow.
- Transportation and infrastructure: The Chamber will support policies and projects that enhance efficiency and access to transportation opportunities, such as rail, port, and air service to encourage regional growth. This includes being a leading voice for the completion of the long-awaited rail service connecting the Quad Cities and Chicago. Additionally, the Chamber will press on with regional partners to develop a long-term comprehensive regional flood plan to protect businesses, infrastructure and other assets in the Quad Cities.
- Workforce development: The Chamber will champion initiatives that build our workforce and talent pipelines by supporting programs like the Future Ready Iowa initiative and efforts that maximize the Quad Cities’ four-year public university.
Key regional advocacy priorities, including a link to a detailed list, can be found on the Chamber’s website at: https://quadcitieschamber.com/business-services/advocacy/regional-priorities.
Chamber hosts legislative roundtable January 29
The Chamber also will discuss its regional advocacy priorities and provide a preview of the legislative sessions during the kickoff to its 2021 Legislative Event Series at 9 a.m., Friday, January 29. The first event will feature opening remarks from Chamber Board Chair Cathy Edwards and a legislative preview from Iowa state Senator Chris Cournoyer and Illinois state Representative Tony McCombie. Jake Ford, Director of Government Affairs, will discuss the Chamber’s 2021 Regional Advocacy Priorities and the upcoming sessions with Representative McCombie and Senator Cournoyer. There will be time for Q&A.
There is no cost to attend the event. Advance registration is required at quadcitieschamber.com.