North Carolina Named "State Chamber of the Year"
The Council of State Chambers announced on October 11, 2016, that the North Carolina Chamber has been named “State Chamber of the Year.” The purpose of the State Chamber of the Year award is: to bring attention to innovative initiatives and best practices that advance state chambers' mission and work; and to provide deserved recognition to state chambers and their leaders who have distinguished themselves by providing exceptional services and results for their members. Read more here

COSC Presents Results of "Future of Transportation Survey" to Lawmakers at NCSL Conference
The Council of State Chambers would like to thank the forty-three state chambers that completed COSC's "Future of State Transportation Funding" survey. On August 9, 2016, COSC's Policy Director Bill Kramer presented the survey results to a group of lawmakers at the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Legislative Summit in Chicago. In addition to sharing the business perspective on transportation infrastructure funding and investment with state legislators, this survey is intended to educate COSC members on the attitudes on this issue from their colleagues across the country. An overview of the survey results are available here

COSC Files Gillette Amicus Brief
On June 30, 2016, the Council of State Chambers filed our petition for certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court in Gillette v. California Franchise Tax Board. The brief, drafted by Lynn Gandhi, Partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn, argues:

The issue before the Court is of critical concern for the state chambers and the business enterprises that comprise their membership, regardless of size. Businesses create the majority of U.S. jobs and fund the operations of every state. Businesses commit financial resources, employ persons and develop plans based on the current state of the law.

Businesses need certainty to grow and expand. The potential for a state to fail to uphold the provisions of a binding compact, or to impose retroactive changes in the law to pretend that membership in a compact never existed, injects an element of uncertainty in every business transaction that occurs in our nation.

Such uncertainty creates instability and the potential for chaos in our economic system, which must be strong to ensure the safety and welfare of our nation. (“Not only the wealth, but the independence and security of a country, appear to be materially connected with the prosperity of manufactures.”) Allowing a state to retroactively change the law under the guise of “interpretation” or “curative” or “remedial” legislation, which disadvantages businesses and their employees, poses severe problems for those who attempt to structure their activities to comply with the law.

If this decision is left to stand, this instability will increase as additional states seek to pretend that their obligations under a myriad of multistate compacts never existed. Such actions would negatively affect the state chambers and their members. Indeed, the mere uncertainty of the status of existing compacts while the Court considers granting Gillette’s petition is harmful, and the uncertainty continues to grow.

COSC would like to thank all of the state chambers who worked with us to develop and support the brief, including the Michigan Chamber, Ohio Chamber, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, Minnesota Chamber, Missouri Chamber, and Kentucky Chamber. Read the full brief here.