Our Government Affairs Committee monitors and educates interested parties from within the South Shore Chamber and the membership at large (as appropriate) on Federal, state and local government initiatives, regulation, mandates that impact the South Shore businesses, industries. When necessary, the committee takes the pulse of the organization with respect to such issues. As a matter of policy, neither the Government Affairs Committee nor the Chamber itself advocate in support of or against business issues that may evoke mixed feelings on behalf of our membership. However, in some cases and with the Board's permission (via vote) the Chamber may take a position for or against a policy.
Examples of ot topics include:
- Family Medical Leave Act
- Raising the Minimum Wage
- Heatlth Care Reform
- Affordable Care Act
The group also brings political speakers in to meet with the group and asks that interested parties sign up to receive emails on topics of interest though our Communications tab.
Advocacy Issues that Matter
The South Shore Chamber of Commerce opposes the November ballot question to legalize marijuana. As a general principle the Chamber feels referendum questions are the wrong way to write laws. Some states, including Massachusetts, allow for medical use of marijuana. A smaller number of states have legalized the production, sale and use of THC—the active ingredient in marijuana. Issues around workplace and employment law, production of food products with THC, marketing to young people, the social and economic costs of promoting an addictive product and the impact on communities are being studied in those states. The Chamber sees no benefit in becoming one of those pioneering states to face and try to solve those problems. It is also concerned about the contradictory treatment of having some commercial activity legal under state law but illegal under federal law.
The membership was surveyed. While the response rate was low the overwhelming majority were opposed. These two comments were typical of the responses offered on both sides.
MA has a bad enough drug crisis. We don't need to legalize another drug (alcohol, cigarettes, etc.)just for the tax revenue.
I think that it would be better that we are ahead of the curve when the federal government finally does accept the manufacturing and sale of Marijuana. Massachusetts has been a first in a lot of the changes to changing laws that are just not good for the people anymore. Why would the South shore Chamber fight this? Marijuana is not an opiate, and has been found NOT to be the gateway to drug abuse.
For more information follow these links for
- Text of the 24 page law proposed by the ballot question.
- Link to Safe and Healthy Massachusetts—leading opponent to the question
- Link to “Yes on 4” website –leading supporter of the question