MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition Announces 2012 Initiatives at Legislative Luncheon

COLUMBIA, S.C. – More than 75 people gathered Wednesday for the MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition Legislators Luncheon to hear an overview of the organization’s 2012 legislative initiatives, as well as issues impacting the Midstate region.

Legislative members from 11 counties across the MIDSTATE attended the event to hear from Chamber presidents on key issues such as nuclear industry workforce development, military base support, transportation infrastructure, creating a business friendly region and our ports.

“It was remarkable to have 35 elected officials and 40 Chamber leaders in attendance at our first MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition luncheon,” said Randy Halfacre, President/CEO of the Greater Lexington Chamber and Visitors Center. “Together, we can make a tremendous difference to bring about positive change that encourages growth and development, leading to job creation and enhanced quality of life. I am excited about our opportunities and the strength we share when we focus on common issues for the good of the region.”

The MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition comprises more than 1.3 million people and a labor force of over 520,000; more than 70,000 students attending 19 colleges and universities; home to 9 airports; four interstate highways; 3 major military bases whose presence contributes over $7.1 billion annually to the local economy; 8 full service hospitals with more than 2500 beds; 75 international companies and over 100 corporate headquarters. The MIDSTATE region is represented by one-fourth of the state House of Representatives and one-third of the state Senate.

“It is vitally important that the Chambers have come together for the good of the entire region”, remarked Representative Todd Atwater, House of Representatives, Lexington County.  “The MIDSTATE Coalition has hit the target by identifying the largest issues with potential to impact our region and developed strategic plans to work those areas to encourage economic growth, jobs creation and a business friendly climate.  I applaud the Chambers for coming together to make this a true effort on behalf of our region.”

The MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition is a collaboration of the Batesburg-Leesville Chamber of Commerce & Visitors’ Center, Edgefield County Chamber, Fairfield County Chamber, Greater Aiken Chamber, Greater Blythewood Chamber, Greater Chapin Chamber, Greater Columbia Chamber, Greater Irmo Chamber & Visitor’s Center, Greater Lexington Chamber & Visitors Center, Greater Sumter Chamber, Kershaw County Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Center, Lake Murray Chamber, Newberry County Chamber, Greater North Augusta Chamber, Orangeburg County Chamber, Saluda County Chamber, Tri-County Regional Chamber, Calhoun County Chamber, and the West Metro Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Center.

For a full report on the topics discussed at the luncheon, click here.

For more information about the MIDSTATE Chambers Coalition, please visit www.midstatechamberscoalition.org or contact Susan Vaughan McPherson at 803.733.1148 or SMcPherson@Columbiachamber.com.

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