State Chamber Advocates For Arkansas Businesses (Advertisement)

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, May. 10, 2010 12:00 am  

Kenny Hall, Executive Vice President (left); Susie Marks, Senior Vice President; Randy Zook, President and CEO.

Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce/Associated Industries of Arkansas
1200 W. Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, Ark.   72201
(501) 372-2222
(501) 372-2722 (fax)

Number of Employees: 10
Top Executive: Randy Zook, President and CEO
Product or Service: Advocating For State's Business Community
Year Founded: 1928

The Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce/Associated Industries of Arkansas is a leading voice for business at the State Capitol particularly on issues affecting Arkansas employers. The organizations’ mission is to promote a pro-business, free-enterprise agenda and prevent anti-business legislation, regulations and rules.

“We are focused on the nuts and bolts of the politics of business – not the business of politics,” President and CEO Randy Zook said. “We advocate on behalf of our members, and all the businesses of Arkansas, and we work to help them understand the ways state and national issues might affect their prospects and chances for success.”

Benefiting Business

The State Chamber has helped enact workers’ compensation reform, tort reform and battled for a fair system with low taxes so Arkansas employers can compete in today’s global economy.

“Most of what we do benefits all the businesses of Arkansas,” Executive Vice President Kenny Hall said. “We lobby for a better economic environment in Arkansas, and our members help us identify issues that are important to them.”

A key win the State Chamber helped deliver Arkansas manufacturers is the sales tax they pay on energy costs, which has been reduced from 6 percent to 4 percent to today’s 3.25 percent – major steps in making the state’s manufacturers more competitive.

Benefits for the more than 1,250 State Chamber members also include the opportunity to serve on issue-based committees that help identify and develop key issues that are critical to the state’s business future in areas including education, governmental affairs, health care, taxes, unemployment insurance, human resources and workers’ compensation.

The State Chamber also recently has revitalized its Small Business Council, which focuses on issues of particular importance to the small business community and injects those businesses’ viewpoints into the consideration of a broad range of issues.

Education and Leadership

Besides hosting committee meetings and giving members forums for networking, the State Chamber takes its show on the road – literally. More than 700 people attended 18 “Door-to-Door” lunch meetings held across the state in 2009, presenting an opportunity for the State Chamber to help area business leaders understand the services it has to offer while also providing feedback on the issues of specific importance to those employers.



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