A lead priority for the Chamber and its 38 regional partners in the OneVoice legislative agenda, House Bill 1008 authored by the Tulsa region’s Rep. Skye McNiel and Sen. Mike Mazzei effectively removes the aerospace engineering tax credit from a list of tax credits suspended in the session last year.
In a prepared statement Gov. Fallin said, “I’m extremely pleased that the Legislature has sent this important measure to my desk. The aerospace engineer tax credits have demonstrated their value as an important tool for job creation and economic growth in Oklahoma. Aerospace is one of the state’s most important, cutting-edge industries, and I’m proud to be able to sign a measure into law that will support our employers and help to bring in quality jobs to the state.”
Mike Neal, Chamber president and CEO, was equally pleased and continued his gratification and support of the Oklahoma legislature.
“With her signature, Gov. Fallin has confirmed her commitment to growing jobs and capital investment in Oklahoma," Neal said. "Equally, the Tulsa regional delegation worked diligently to make sure this bill reached her desk. We will share this news with prospective companies and site-location companies to showcase Oklahoma’s pro-business leadership.”
Aggressively competing for human capital continues to be a lead economic development initiative for the Chamber on behalf of Northeast Oklahoma. Restoring this workforce incentive was selected as a top priority on the Tulsa regional OneVoice legislative agenda by more than 250 attendees at a Chamber summit last fall.
“Retaining aerospace engineers in Oklahoma post-graduation is critical to the future workforce of the Tulsa region’s largest industry,” said Neal. “Capturing these graduates before they move out of state ultimately increases our chances of keeping these professionals here for the duration of his or her career. Simply put, an investment in the first five years of a career can return millions of dollars in future income for the state of Oklahoma.”
Chamber to host Regional Day at the Capitol Wednesday
The annual Tulsa Regional Day at the Capitol is presented by the George Kaiser Family Foundation and LaFarge Cement. Cost to attend the event is $49 for members and includes lunch. For more information or to register call 918.560.0212 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To register online visit TulsaChamber.com.
Oklahoma’s federal delegation honored as “Pro-Business Congressmen” by U.S. Chamber
All seven members of Oklahoma’s federal delegation were honored with the Spirit of Enterprise Award, including Senator Jim Inhofe, Senator Tom Coburn and Representatives John Sullivan, Tom Cole, Frank Lucas, Dan Boren and James Lankford.
“The recognition of our federal delegation today is a testament to the fantastic representation we have in Washington D.C.,” said Mike Neal, president and CEO of the Tulsa Metro Chamber. “Our business community is incredibly fortunate to have their ongoing support and commitment to improving the business climate within our state and across the country. We will continue to provide the Tulsa area business community with opportunities to engage Oklahoma’s federal delegation through the annual Regional D.C. Fly-in and the congressional luncheon series.”
Street CReD: Polishing the Pearl
The “weekend makeover” will start Friday, April 15 at 5 p.m. with a ceremonial ribbon cutting. Vendors like the Dog House, Dwelling Spaces, Marshall Brewery and Back Alley Blues and Barbecue will be setting up temporary shops and will be joined by street performers and community partners like PLANiTULSA and INCOG. Another community partner, Up With Trees, donated 64 trees to be used in the makeover, which includes turning the four-lane street into a more pedestrian and bike-friendly area with a tree-lined median and wider sidewalks. TYPros volunteers are currently cleaning, painting and organizing the neglected area to prepare it for a weekend of kid-friendly excitement and fun. The event will continue until 9 p.m. Friday night and resume Saturday morning at 10 a.m. There will be a special presentation at 11 a.m. Saturday and vendors, performers and community partners will be there until 3 p.m.
This approach to development benefits shop owners and local merchants whose products and services can more easily be observed. TYPros presents the initiative to offer citizens a clear vision of what Tulsa could become through community redevelopment and urban revitalization. Each year, TYPros will choose a different part of the city to highlight. When no area of Tulsa is neglected, the entire city benefits.
There is no cost to attend. For more details contact Brian Paschal, executive director of TYPros, at 918.560.0286 or email@example.com
Number of Tulsa’s direct flights increases
United formally launched the new flight today with a ribbon cutting ceremony.
Tulsa International Airport Director Jeff Mulder acknowledged the importance of the new service, not only as the eighth most popular regional destination for Tulsa travelers but also because of the international connections from Washington Dulles.
The new flight will operate daily and increases Tulsa International Airport’s non-stop service to 17 cities. The increase assists VisitTulsa, the Chamber’s convention and visitors program, in selling Tulsa and is a boon to the Chamber’s economic development division’s business recruitment efforts.
“Tulsa offers companies numerous reasons to relocate or grow a business, and its central location is integral to attracting businesses to the region,” said Jim Fram, the Chamber’s senior vice president of economic development. “Direct flights provide companies and their clients a convenient, affordable opportunity for business travel.”
Chamber hosts education forum focusing on Project Schoolhouse
The forum was led by Dr. Keith Ballard, superintendent of Tulsa Public Schools, who was joined by Jim McCarthy, Project Schoolhouse consultant; Kevin Burr, associate superintendent for secondary schools, and Bob Burton, chief of staff for Tulsa Public Schools. Discussion focused on TPS’ motivation for starting the initiative, the impact Project Schoolhouse will have on the students and what possible closings will mean for the future of our community.
Burr acknowledged the challenges ahead.
“This may be the hardest thing I’ll have to do in my career, but this may be the greatest opportunity I have in my career to make a change,” Burr said.
The Chamber supports TPS’ acceptance of this challenge and understands how difficult this process will be.
“Weighing options as complicated as these is never easy,” said Mike Neal, president and CEO of the Tulsa Metro Chamber. “Ultimately, the students' futures are at stake and they deserve the finest, well-rounded and well-funded education Tulsa can provide. We applaud Dr. Ballard and the TPS School Board for these considerations and are confident that this course of action will improve the quality of education in Tulsa.”
TPS presented three plans to the public last week that vary in the number and location of possible school closings. In the coming weeks, TPS will continue to review roughly 41,000 surveys from the public. Ballard stressed the importance of these surveys saying the initiative will be unsuccessful without the “complete and total involvement of the community.”
To allow for continued community input and involvement, TPS is hosting public hearings in the coming weeks. They are currently scheduled for Tuesday, April 12 at Gilcrease Middle School, 5550 N. Cincinnati Ave.; Thursday, April 14 at Foster Middle School, 12121 E. 21 St.; Tuesday, April 19 at Thoreau Demonstration Academy, 7370 E. 71st St.; and Monday, April 25 at Clinton Middle School, 2224 W. 41 St. All forums will begin at 6 p.m. in the school auditorium and all area feeder school patrons are invited to attend.
The Chamber continues to maintain an involved, supportive stance on Project Schoolhouse and is working diligently to identify how the possible closings will affect its own program, Partners In Education.
Susan Harris, senior vice president of education and workforce at the Chamber said, “We will work with the partners for any schools that close to ensure that their transition to another school goes well. If their schools are closed, we hope that the partners will choose to move with the children and continue to build those relationships at their new facilities.”
For more information on Project Schoolhouse please click here. To see the Chamber’s future forums and events, please go here.
What we’re working onExecutive
• Attending Governor Mary Fallin’s Aerospace Tax Credits bill signing ceremony at the State Capitol.
• Speaking at the United Airlines ribbon cutting to commemorate the launch of service to Washington, D.C.
• Making Tulsa’s Future II CEO calls.
• Meeting and tour with Electranetics.
• Monthly meeting with Terry Simonson.
• Hosting Small Group Board Luncheon.
• Meeting with volunteer leadership to discuss downtown development.
• Meeting with Morton Health.
• Attending Resource Campaign Kickoff.
• Hosting dinner with Secretary of Commerce Dave Lopez.
• Hosting Tulsa Regional Day at the State Capitol.
• Attending management staff retreat.
• Attending Tulsa Press Club Headliner Dinner.
• Making Resource Campaign calls.
• Attending Regional Transit Retreat.
• Meeting with Stan Lybarger regarding Stadium Trust.
• Conference call with former mayor of Indianapolis regarding downtown revitalization.
• Meeting to discuss development of a downtown museum coalition and district.
• Attending Downtown Coordinating Council meeting.
• Participating in the FAST Forward Regional Transit Stakeholder’s Retreat.
• Participating in the CDFA-TIF Coalition Webcast Series: “How to Use TIF in a Struggling Economy.”
• Meeting to discuss downtown and river development.
• Wrapping up Tulsa’s Future II calls.
• Meeting with leadership and the new Oklahoma Secretary of Commerce.
• Attending the meeting of the Tulsa International Airport Authority.
• Serving as a judge in the Governor’s Cup business plan competition.
• Assisting local manufacturer with issues related to rate increases.
• Working with resource partner to plan next FastTrac class for Growth Venture.
• Meeting with Small Business Council chair regarding legislative strategies.
• Attending Regional Day at the Capitol.
• Meeting with Governor’s Council on Small Business to strategize sessions for conference.
• Assisting local business with streets issue.
• Hosting site visit for industrial project.
• Attending Oklahoma Health Research Conference in OKC.
• Meeting with the Chamber Sustainability Committee to discuss how we can make the Chamber a greener organization.
• Speaking at Collinsville city council for Tulsa’s Future II.
Education and Workforce
• Attending TAHRA College Relations meeting.
• Meeting with WorkKey Profile & Tulsa Tech rep to discuss program and outreach.
• Tulsa Collegiate Job Fair.
• Attending Louder Than a Bomb Tulsa Teen Poetry Slam/Festival.
• Meeting with consultants from NYC to discuss SIF WorkAdvance program.
• College Access Career Readiness coaches survey results.
• Meeting to discuss Chamber’s sustainability initiatives/program with TYPros leadership.
• Talent Dividend prize application and survey executive summary being finalized.
• Preparing for Project School House discussions at TPS board meetings.
• Preparing for final discussions on Oklahoma Education Innovation Fund legislation.
• Completing move out of The Forge.
• Continuing “makeover” of Pearl District for Street CReD.
Tulsa’s Young Professionals
• Completing move out of The Forge.
• Continuing “makeover” of Pearl District for Street CReD.
• Monitoring State and Federal legislation.
• Hosting April 6th Regional Day at the Capitol event.
• Attending State Chamber Legislative Affairs regular meeting.
• Attending Election District Commission Meeting.
• Attending Resource Campaign Kick-Off.
• Attending FAST Forward Regional Stakeholders Retreat.
• Attending monthly CTAG meeting.
• Planning March-May legislative events.
• SMG / VT Sales Meeting.
• Diversity Lunch.
• Resource Campaign Kick Off.
• Area Development Pre-con meeting.
• Working on site visit for SEDC.
• Working on marketing plan.
• Management staff retreat.
• Processing Housing reservations for SKILLS USA 2011 Leadership conference and Appaloosa Horse Club 2011 National Show.
• Welcoming the Collie Club of America to Tulsa’s Expo Square for their 2011 National Specialty show April 11-16.
• Contact all university deans who received a letter about the Bring It Home campaign.
• Create site tour agenda for the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development.
• Present Tulsa as a host destination to Central States Shrine Association.
• Host a reception for Central States Shrine Association.
Tulsa Sports Commission
• USA Volleyball Committee is formed and operations are underway. Title Sponsor SOLD.
• USA Fencing, BID Submitted – status pending.
• NCAA Men’s Basketball Hotel wrap-up – pick up reports – NCAA review.
• AC Milan Soccer contract under review for potential events in Tulsa.
• Contract for new sports registration program “Hang A Star” almost complete.
• Marketing and appointment planning for upcoming NASC Sports Travel Conference underway.
March Hospitality ClubVolunteer of the Month
Tommy Harris, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network
Chris Barton, Million Dollar Elm Casino – Central Services
Mary Bransford, Value News Inc.
Kent Brown, Wells Fargo Advisors LLC
Teresa Brown, Courtyard by Marriott
Orlando Dumalag, callOrlando.com LLC
Christina Edwards, Paychex Inc.
Ami Frazier, EasyTEL Communications Inc.
Betty Groth, RSVP (Retired Senior Volunteer Program)
Deb Karstens, Home Creations
Marvin Krueger, Melaleuca Inc.
Carl Novara, Farmers Insurance*Novara Insurance Agency
Catie Pritchard, Basys Processiong powered by Marathon
Jerry Pykiet, Blue Brook Consulting Inc.
Travis Ring, Eastern Oklahoma Chiropractic PLLC
Rodney Troutz, U.S. Cellular – Tulsa Hills
Amy Williams, Tulsa World
Chamber welcomes new businessesEach month the Tulsa Metro Chamber's Hospitality Club welcomes new businesses and new Chamber members to the community by assisting with ribbon cuttings and groundbreaking announcements.
Allergy, Asthma & Immunology Center, P.C.
DaVita Dialysis Center
Don Thornton Cadillac
La Flama Mexican Grill
New Horizons Computer Center
Tulsa Translations LLC
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