Chamber leaders statewide united in opposition to S.Q. 744

CapitolBeatOK Staff Report

Published: 01-Nov-2010

Community leaders across the state, including a network of more than 30 local Chambers of Commerce and economic development organizations, have united as part of the One Oklahoma Coalition to oppose State Question 744. The groups represent business and community interests across every region of the state.

“Not since the Right to Work campaign have we seen such a large and diverse group of chambers and economic interests united in our views on a state question,” said State Chamber President Fred Morgan. “We have seen so many chambers pass resolutions opposing S.Q. 744 because we all know that passage of this reckless initiative would set Oklahoma’s economic development efforts back decades, if not forever.”

The Enid and Sallisaw Chambers are just two of many represented in the statewide coalition joining trade and professional organizations of bankers, municipalities, the farm bureau, insurance agents, grocers, health care providers and hospitals.”

“In recent years we have made real progress in attracting business and industry to rural Oklahoma, but passage of S.Q. 744 would stop those efforts in their tracks,” said Enid Chamber President & CEO Jon Blankenship. “It is critical that the Legislature be able to consider all of the state’s needs when crafting the state budget. Funding of any government service should not be tied to what other states spend.”

“This question directly affects the budgets of all other state agencies.  It is the opinion of many chambers of commerce that passage of this question will affect not only funding for agencies but could very well lead to worker lay-offs, no state incentives to bring in new industry and the great possibility of increased tax burdens on Oklahoma families,” said Sallisaw Chamber President Judy Martens.

The diverse coalition against S.Q. 744 shows the issue is not a partisan one, said State Chamber President Morgan. 

“This is not a Republican or Democrat issue. Nor is this a pro-education or anti-education issue. This is a business issue, pure and simple. The economic ramifications we will face if this initiative passes next Tuesday will be disastrous for our state,” Morgan concluded.

The business groups opposing S.Q. 744 include:

o   The State Chamber of Oklahoma

o   Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce

o   Tulsa Metro Chamber of Commerce

o   Altus Chamber of Commerce

o   Ardmore Chamber of Commerce

o   Atoka Chamber of Commerce

o   Bartlesville Regional Chamber

o   Broken Arrow Area Chamber of Commerce

o   Buffalo Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Buffalo

o   Chickasha Chamber of Commerce

o   Cleveland Chamber of Commerce

o   Duncan Chamber of Commerce

o   Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce

o   Edmond Economic Development Council

o   Enid Chamber of Commerce

o   Enid Regional Alliance

o   Jenks Chamber of Commerce

o   Lawton Ft. Sill Chamber of Commerce

o   Logan County Economic Development Council

o   Miami Area Chamber of Commerce

o   Norman Chamber of Commerce

o   Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce Executives Association

o   Oklahoma Professional Economic Development Council

o   Owasso Chamber of Commerce

o   Pauls Valley Chamber of Commerce

o   Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce

o   Seminole Economic Development Council

o   Shawnee Chamber of Commerce

o   Southwest Tulsa Chamber of Commerce

o   Stillwater Chamber of Commerce

o   The Northwest Chamber of Commerce

o   Woodward Chamber of Commerce

o   Woodward Industrial Foundation