News & Resources

Bottom Line

View the latest Arizona Chamber policy commentary from President & CEO Glenn Hamer. Click on the links below to view our collection of Bottom Line columns.

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Latest Updates:

Make NAFTA Great Again
March 07, 2017

Let’s make the North American Free Trade Agreement great again. NAFTA is already pretty great, but this 23-year-old agreement can be modernized and made even better.

The key will be to find value-adds to areas that will result in benefits to the US, Canada and Mexico.

Understanding that Canada and Mexico seem committed to maintaining the trilateral nature of the agreement, the US – meaning our governments at all levels, and the nation’s business community – must work together to identify those areas that unquestionably benefit our country, but that are also beneficial to Mexico and Canada.

Thirty Days of Trade
March 03, 2017

I wanted to give you a peek into my calendar over the past month to get a sense of the time and effort the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the broader Arizona business community, and leaders from across the state have been devoting to promoting and strengthening Arizona’s international trade profile and the state’s cross-border relationships. There might be mixed signals coming from the Beltway on trade, but here at home, we’re speaking with one voice.

Putting an end to the cash for compliance racket
February 16, 2017
 Landmark legislation that has led to legally protected access and accommodations for millions of Americans with disabilities is now being cynically manipulated by rogue attorneys in an attempt to line their own pockets.
 
Signed into law in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush and supported by both parties, the Americans with Disabilities Act broke down barriers for individuals with disabilities in a profound way. The accommodations we expect today – wheelchair ramps, bathroom grab bars, electronic door openers, and more – were once rarely seen, preventing too many Americans from participating fully in all aspects of society.
 
The changes brought about by the adoption of the ADA were significant. Under the law, building owners are required to alter their facility to be readily accessible to individuals with disabilities. If building owners don’t comply, the ADA allows for private individuals to sue and seek damages.
Why Arizona needs initiative reform
February 09, 2017

Last July, proponents of a higher minimum wage in Arizona submitted over 270,000 petition signatures to the Secretary of State’s Office in hopes of securing a spot on the November ballot. Tens of thousands of those signatures were apparently fraudulent.

We know this because a superior court judge determined as much when the validity of the signatures was challenged by the Arizona Restaurant Association. We also know this because the campaign behind what came to be Proposition 206 pointed to the invalid signatures as justification for not paying the firm it contracted to collect signatures after that firm sued.

None of that mattered, however. The initiative still got on the ballot due to a technicality and, as has been the case with minimum wage initiatives across the country, passed by a wide margin.