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Businesses urged to use Minimum Wage Reality Check website

December 17, 2015
By Todd J. Tranum - President & CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of the Southe , Westfield Republican

With even more calls now to raise the minimum wage, New York's business community must become more engaged in the process. We strongly encourage all local businesses to make their voices heard on this issue. One easy way to do that is to log on to the Minimum Wage Reality Check website and sign up for update emails. You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Minimum Wage Reality Check is a coalition of organizations statewide that are committed to raising awareness about the negative impacts of a statewide $15 minimum wage. Participating organizations include The Business Council of New York State, New York Farm Bureau, New York State Liquor Store Association, Northeastern Retail Lumber Association, Ski Areas of New York, New York State Hospitality and Tourism Association, and many others. This diverse group has come together around this issue because each of them has a significant stake in the game. A $15 minimum wage would be incredibly harmful to a wide variety of businesses statewide.

We have long advocated for this issue to be addressed at the national level. When New York jumps ahead of the federal government to raise the minimum wage it creates an uneven playing field for businesses and employees alike and puts New York at a competitive economic disadvantage.

A minimum wage increase is not the answer to New York's economic challenges. What we need are investments in workforce training and economic development to help grow existing businesses and bring in new businesses.

We strongly urge you to check out, and make your voice heard.

Chamber gift checks make great gifts, help local businesses

Shop Small. Shop Local. Shop-Tauqua! Small Business Saturday has come and gone again, yet the Chamber continues to promote shopping locally during this holiday season. When you buy merchandise that is locally made or sold by local businesses, you are supporting our economy right here in Chautauqua County.

One easy and convenient way to support local businesses is to give Shop-Tauqua Chamber Gift Checks to your family, friends, co-workers, and employees this season. Chamber Gift Checks can be used just like cash at over 80 local businesses for everything from groceries to hardware, to dining in local restaurants. Call the Chamber to order your checks or to learn more: 366-6200 or 484-1101.

Chamber Congressional Lunch rescheduled for Jan. 29

Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce provides an opportunity for local business people to meet with our Congressman. Representative Tom Reed will participate in the annual Chamber Federal Congressional Lunch on Friday, Jan. 29, at Shorewood Country Club, West Lake Road, Dunkirk. The event will begin at noon, and we encourage our members to come with questions for the Congressman.

This event is sponsored by Advanced Manufacturing Technology, Fredonia College Foundation, Fredonia Place, Jamestown Mattress Company, Lawley Insurance, Nestle Purina PetCare, The Observer, The Post-Journal, WCA Hospital, and WJTN/WWSE/WKSN/WHUG/WQFX.

The cost is just $18 for Chamber members or $21 for non-members. To register, please call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101, or visit our website at

Doors Open Jamestown

event set for Jan. 16

Once again this year attractions in the Jamestown area will open their doors for free, to give local people a chance to see for free what hundreds of tourists pay for each year. Doors Open Jamestown is set for Saturday, January 16 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Participating attractions are: Busti Grist Mill, Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, Dykeman Young Vintage Emporium, Fenton History Center, Infinity Performing Arts Center, James Prendergast Library, Jamestown Audubon Center & Sanctuary, Jamestown Gateway Train Station, Jamestown Savings Bank Arena, Lucile M. Write Air Museum, Lucille Ball Desi Arnaz Center and Museum, Lucille Ball Little Theater, Marshall Martz Observatory, Reg Lenna Center for the Arts, Robert H. Jackson Center, and the Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History.

In addition to the attractions, local restaurants will be open downtown and ready to serve you. We hope you will take advantage of this tremendous opportunity, brought to you by the Jamestown Community Chamber of Commerce and Jamestown Up Close.

Winter Festival volunteers needed

Even though the weather has been mild so far, we continue to hold out hope for the usual round of winter activities that draw visitors to Chautauqua County including skiing, snowmobiling, and ice fishing. One of the biggest draws each year is the Presidents Day Weekend Winter Festival, set for the weekend of Feb. 12-14, 2016 at Lakeside Park in Mayville. This huge event is put together annually by the Mayville-Chautauqua Community Chamber of Commerce, and they could not do it without the dozens of volunteers who step up to the plate. The festival will be here before you know it. If you can volunteer this year, please contact Mayville-Chautauqua Chamber Coordinator Debby Marsala at 753-3113. Your assistance is appreciated.



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