• Chamber News

  • Chamber Encourages Business Owners and Employees to Vote!

    The November general election is just weeks away.   In addition to electing local leaders, we will also have a chance to weigh in on local ballot questions that will drive investments in local higher education and public safety.   And, of course, there are the statewide elections and ballot measures that will make up a significant portion of the ballot this year.

    We recognize that the outcomes of these elections, both in terms of candidates and measures, can have significant impacts on jobs, the state of our economy, and the health of our individual businesses.   We believe that voters benefit from having more information and perspectives, including from their employers.   Business owners often shy away from talking about these issues with their employees and colleagues out of an overabundance of caution.   It’s important to know that you can share your perspective, with some common sense guidelines to follow.   If you want to communicate your positions to your employees, be assured that you are within your rights to do so—just remember: NO PAYCHECK STUFFERS, no coercion, no rewarding or punishing employees (or threatening to do so) for their political activities or beliefs. For more guidelines on political communications to employees, CalChamber has a very informative brochure on their website. Note the distinction between internal communications (to employees, stockholders and their families) and communications to external audiences (such as non-stockholder retirees, outside vendors, customers, passerby).

    The Santa Maria Valley Chamber has officially endorsed two local measures … we strongly encourage voters in our community to support Measure U (Santa Maria public safety sales tax initiative) and Measure Y (Allan Hancock College facilities bond).   Additionally, we believe that Measure G & Measure H (citizen commissions to redraw Santa Barbara County Supervisor district boundaries) would be better than leaving redistricting power with the elected supervisors.  

    We have not taken formal positions on the statewide ballot initiatives, but thought it might be instructive to share with you the positions (PDF) taken by our statewide partners at the CalChamber.   To the extent their rationale lines up with yours, feel free to use their materials to communicate to your employees and colleagues on these issues.

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