YOUR Membership at Work
YOUR Chamber wrapped up an incredible year of championing business growth and business prosperity in in Union County.
We shared legislative successes, celebrated the 10th year of Make It In Union County, and presented the Annual Excellence in Business Awards.
Read on to see your membership at work.
PUBLIC POLICY COMMITTEE WORK
Public Policy General Assembly Panel
The Public Policy Program hosted a panel with members of the Union County delegation to the NC General Assembly. The luncheon, held on November 8, 2023 at the Union County Agricultural Center, focused on current legislative efforts.
Public Policy Consultant Brian Francis moderated the panel, which included Senators Todd Johnson and Dave Craven and Representative Dean Arp.
The panelists discussed the successful budget passed last year, which included reducing corporate income tax and franchise taxes. “Taxes and tax policy have been a continual theme to get those decreased for everyone since 2010. And we have proven that it works. We continue to have more revenue come into the state every time we cut taxes. That benefits everybody in this room and the state of North Carolina as well,” shared Senator Dave Craven.
Representative Dean Arp added, “We have controlled spending. We don’t spend to the amount of revenue that comes in. We live within our means. We have been able to raise significantly more revenue with lower tax rates and been able to turn that back into the market. We have used that model and be wildly successful in North Carolina.”
They also highlighted the continuing need to increase connectivity to high-speed internet, especially in rural parts of Union County. Senator Todd Johnson stressed that, while there has been money appropriated for expanding broadband, they have to be thoughtful about the process.
“It’s nice to have this money appropriated, but you don’t want to take these vital resources and just start throwing it out and hoping it actually makes a difference. We are trying to get mapping done to make sure we can point to a specific area and know the number of houses not served in that area and be able to make sure those funds are spent appropriately,” he shared.
Our next Public Policy event is coming up February 2, 2024. We will release the 2024 Legislative Agenda at a breakfast from 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. at the Union County Agricultural Center. You can read more details and register here.
WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS
Make It In Union County
2023 marked the 10th year of Make it In Union County, a grassroots effort to increase awareness of manufacturers’ positive impact on our community and promote manufacturing as a premier career choice.
This year, Make It included a record 16 field trips for Union County Public Schools students along with Open House Tours and manufacturing and HR professionals sharing in classrooms. Those activities reached over 1400 students!
Eric Dixon Memorial Scholarship
Make It In Union County is a week-long celebration that culminates with a Manufacturing Celebration Breakfast. This invitation-only event is a way to honor the incredible contributions Union County manufacturers make to the community.
The event this year included a bittersweet moment. In 2023, the Union County community lost a great man when Eric Dixon, Chairman of the Union County Chamber Board of Directors passed away.
At the Celebration Breakfast, Chamber Board Treasurer Fred Edwards announced the creation of the Eric Dixon Memorial Scholarship to provide scholarships to South Piedmont Community College students interested in manufacturing, trades, and apprenticeships.
If you are interested in contributing to the scholarship fund, please consider donating to:
Eric Dixon Memorial Scholarship Fund
PO Box 126
Polkton, NC 28135
CHAMPIONING BUSINESS GROWTH
Annual Awards Gala
We celebrated the Annual Awards on Thursday, December 7, 2023. Nearly 550 attendees gathered at the Union County Agricultural Center for a night of networking, food, and fun. The evening also included the presentation of the Excellence in Business Awards. Winners included:
Ambassador of the Year
Employer of Choice
South Piedmont Community College
Excellence in Business
Excellence in Small Business
Seniors Helping Seniors
American Red Cross – Southern Piedmont Chapter
Omega In-Home Service
You can watch all the videos of the winners and nominees, as well as see pictures from the Gala here.