Legislative program a product of member advice


Director of Communications

The Business Council has formally adopted its 1998 legislative program, which was developed by committees and councils of member company representatives working in 21 different subject areas.

The program was accepted by the Government Affairs Council on January 20, and then given final approval by the Executive and Policy Committees of the Board of Directors later that day.

The Council's most visible government-relations efforts each year are focused on three to five top priority issues identified by the Board of Directors. The priority list this year includes reforms in unemployment insurance and workers' comp, reduction of energy costs, further tax relief, liability reform, and relief from state mandates that boost local property taxes.

But those are literally the "tip of the iceberg." The Council's government affairs staff and member allies also work on literally hundreds of other issues identified by committees working in specialized subject areas, and by councils representing industry groupings.

The member company technical specialists on The Council's Environmental Conservation Committee, for example, have drafted a 26-point program that ranges from incentives for expedited voluntary cleanups of sites, to enhancements in regulatory flexibility.

The Education and Job Training Committee has an agenda that includes such items as incentives for school districts to consolidate or share services, expanded financial help for students attending both public and independent colleges, and support employer-specific job-training programs.

Upon adoption of the legislative program, many member company representatives involved in the process take a hands-on role in pushing parts of the program through the Legislature.

Participation in councils and committees is open to all Business Council members.