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​​Austin Area Chamber of CommercE
  • Government Affairs reviewed and recommended approval to join the Minnesota Chamber Federation. The Board reviewed five business Priorities for the 2017 Legislative Session as part of the Minnesota Chamber Federation: Transportation, Tax Relief, Healthcare, Uniform Labor Standards and Lawsuit Reform.
  • The Board discussed a new program under consideration for introduction to students in Austin schools.  The CEO Program is business led and business financed, and is designed to encourage entrepreneurship.
  • A flow chart, listing Board participation on Chamber committees was shared.  All Directors are asked to serve on at least one committee outside of the Board of Directors.
  • Buy Mower Rebates wil again be offered to all members. n The 2017 budget includes $7,000 to rebate members who include Buy Mower or We Are Austin logos/messages in their advertising.
  • Government Affairs invites all members to attend monthly conference calls with Legislators, at 8 a.m., the first Tuesday of the month.  Let us know if you plan to attend.  The committee is also committing to follow, inform and act on local issues that impact our business climate.
  • Community Receptionist has reconvened and is redesigning both the Welcome to Austin relocation folders and Someplace Special community profile magazine.


January 2017 Board of Directors

  • 100 Club members have reconvened and begun selling tickets for the annual fundraising event, scheduled for March 3, at the Austin Country Club.  Proceeds benefit 4th of July fireworks.
  • Riverland enrollment is up 3 percent.  The college invested $90,000 to upgrade healthcare technical equipment.  The college foundation awarded $260,000 in scholarships, last fall.
  • DCA continues to work toward implementation of a new incentives program for business.  They also house the SBDC chapter, and assisted 24 businesses in 2016.  The top priority for 2017 is to develop and launch a food, agriculture, bio-business incubator.
  • Austin Public Schools has opened the Oakland Education Center for special education.  An Open House is being planned for February or March.  The Community Learning Center needs more space.  Enrollment is up 53 students since the first of the year, 70% minorities.  Fourteen teachers have been hired through the 2+2 program.
  • Discover Austin has published its 2017 Visitors Guide.  Over 5,000 copies have already been distributed.
  • The City of Austin swore in two new council members. The council voted to donate the Park and Recreation building for expansion of the Paramount Theatre.