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The Wonk – October 2015

New Members

Chamber Leads Fight on Beacon Hill

Nashoba Valley Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Melissa Fetterhoff recently visited the State House to testify against House Bill 1708, An Act establishing just scheduling for employees. The bill would require employers to post employee schedules three weeks in advance, mandate 11 hours off between employees' shifts, and penalize employers for changing the schedule within the 21-day period.

Melissa was joined by Jon Hurst, President of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts, Steve Ryan, Executive Director of the New England Convenience Store Association, Frank Anzalotti, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Package Store Association, and Bill Vernon, the Massachusetts State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business. Together, they testified that the bill fails to understand that flexibility in scheduling is critical to the success of a business. Additionally,  the bill unfairly penalizes businesses for unforeseen circumstances, such as weather events.

The Chamber will continue to be vocal on this issue as the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development debates the bill in the coming months.

In Case You Missed It

At our October Public Policy Meeting, we were happy to welcome Christopher Willenborg, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Military Asset and Security Strategy Task Force. In this position he works closely with Governor Baker, leaders on federal and state levels, military bases, business communities, and local communities to protect national security and promote economic development. As our featured speaker, he explained the Base Realignment and Closure Commission and described how this federal program affects Massachusetts, specifically Devens. It was great to have such an enthusiastic and in-depth conversation about the review process set up by the Governor's office regarding military base closures in Massachusetts and the economic ramifications of these closures.

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