The chamber added that it is also working to defeat two ballot initiatives, one that would repeal the indexing of the gas tax to inflation and another that would institute what the chamber calls government-mandated nurse staffing ratios in hospitals. According to the chamber, the nurse-staffing ballot question would drive up health care costs.
“As we kick off the New Year, the chamber is focused on advancing a number of important policy issues that will strengthen our regional economy,” Paul Guzzi, the chamber’s president and chief executive, said in a statement. “Our 2014 agenda seeks to strengthen our talent base, improve the state’s business cost competitiveness, build on recent progress to strengthen our transportation infrastructure, and further develop the region’s innovation economy. We look forward to continuing our collaborative efforts with state leaders and to working with a new city administration to accomplish these important goals.”
On immigration reform, the chamber said it will work with other chambers of commerce nationwide to work for “legislation that expands temporary (H-1B) and permanent visas for skilled workers, entrepreneurs, and graduates.”
As for expanding charter schools, the chamber supports implementing a “floating cap to increase the supply of charter schools where demand for them is high, to expand opportunity and close the achievement gap.”