Board opposes union 'card check' law
The Largo/Mid-Pinellas Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors is opposing the Employee Free Choice Act, also known as "card check."
If approved, the federal act would deny employees the right to a secret ballot when deciding whether to unionize.
At its December meeting, the board of 18 Mid-Pinellas business leaders voted unanimously against the measure. All agreed that its negative impact to both employers and employees is unjustifiable in the present economy.
Under card check, a union would simply have to collect authorization cards signed by a bargaining unit to be recognized as the exclusive representative of all employees in that unit.
The process would effectively eliminate the use of the secret ballot in elections, where employees can express their preferences in private and prevent anyone from finding out how they voted. The chamber strongly supports the notion that when choices are made without privacy, workers would be more vulnerable to coercion.
While the bill passed the House in 2007, it never made it to the Senate. It's expected to be reintroduced this year.
Luncheon looks to Florida's future
"Fast Forward Florida: A Vision for the Year 2030" is the topic of the Largo/Mid-Pinellas Chamber of Commerce Monthly Business Luncheon from 11:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Tuesday at the Palms of Largo, 300 Lake Ave. NE. It will meet in the recently completed theater at the Royal Palms complex.
Fast Forward Florida is a new initiative by the Florida Chamber of Commerce. Its aim is to insure that Florida plans better and grows smarter during the influx of 10-million people expected to relocate to the state in the next two decades.
Featured guest is Brad Swanson, regional advocate with the Florida chamber. Cost of the luncheon is $15 for chamber members and $20 for nonmembers. To make reservations, call 584-2321 or e-mail email@example.com.
Women in Business Forum & Expo returns
The Largo/Mid-Pinellas Chamber of Commerce will hold its second annual Women in Business Forum & Expo from 4 to 7 p.m. Feb. 4 at the Largo Cultural Center.
Presented by Bright House Networks, this program showcases businesses owned by women and businesses that cater to female clientele. More than 50 exhibits will be featured.
Kicking off the session at 4 p.m. will be a forum presentation, "Women in Business: A Balancing Act." Featured speakers are Dr. Karen Kritsky, medical director of the Florida Breast Institute at Largo Medical Center, and news anchor and entrepreneur Jennifer Holloway. The business exposition will immediately follow.
The program is being coordinated by the chamber's Women in Business Council and is free to the public. Cost to reserve exhibit space is $200 for chamber members and $250 for nonmembers. There are also several sponsorships available. To learn more, call Cindy Paquin at the chamber at (727) 584-2321 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Business workshop scheduled for Jan. 20
The Largo/Mid-Pinellas Chamber of Commerce and S.C.O.R.E. (Service Corps of Retired Executives) will hold a free session titled "How to Make Your Business Thrive, Not Just Survive" from 6 to 8 p.m. Jan. 20 in the Jenkins Wing at the Largo Public Library, 120 Central Park Drive, Largo.
The workshop is intended for business owners in the first few years of operation. It contains valuable tips and practical advice for building a stronger business by using the essential business disciplines of money management and marketing. Advance registration is required.
Call Charlie Cronk at the chamber at 584-2321 or e-mail him at email@example.com.