Public Policy Overview
For more than 25 years the Chambers of Commerce of Oak Ridge, Blount County and Knoxville have worked together to develop a regional legislative agenda to identify state issues of importance and increase job and business growth in the region.
The following items will be the primary focus of the joint efforts of the Knoxville Chamber, Blount County Chamber, and Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce during the 2018 session of the Tennessee General Assembly.
To attract, retain and expand business in our region, we:
- Support local governments’ continued ability to promote economic development and affordable housing through public/private partnerships (TIF, PILOT, and Housing Tax Credits) and encourage the State of Tennessee to promote and support these efforts
- Enhance infrastructure and training incentives and establish technology-driven incentives
Education & Workforce Development
To ensure a high-quality, capable workforce in the future, we:
- Support continued implementation in elementary, middle and high schools of the TN Ready standards, assessments, and their use in evaluating educators’ effectiveness
- Support an accountability model for Tennessee school systems that includes a measure of quality career and technical education, including industry-recognized certifications, work-based learning, dual enrollment and post-secondary opportunities, to help reach the state’s goal of 55 percent of Tennesseans by 2025 holding postsecondary credentials
- Support continuation of Tennessee Promise and other initiatives that encourage attendance and completion of post-secondary training
- Oppose any state action that would result in mandating the election of school system superintendents.
To encourage a healthy workforce while not creating financial burden on employers, we:
- Support health policies, particularly those addressing substance abuse and addiction, which improve the welfare of the state’s workforce
Infrastructure & Transportation
To provide the infrastructure needed for business to succeed, we:
- Support efforts to recruit low-cost air carriers to McGhee Tyson Airport.
- Support the efforts to develop the Oak Ridge Airport as planned by the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority