[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text width=”1/1″ el_position=”first last”]Leaders of the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC) traveled to Sacramento this past week to meet with Torrance’s elected state representatives in Sacramento about state issues related to business. The meetings occurred in conjunction with the California Chamber of Commerce’s (CalChamber) annual Capitol Summit and Host Breakfast event, which occurs every year during the week leading up to the “House of Origin Deadline.” The deadline marks a critical period in the Legislative process where hundreds of bills must be passed out of their originating house in the Legislature or face elimination.
During the summit, the TACC received the CalChamber’s President’s Circle Award for excellence in business advocacy and helping businesses comply with California employment laws. The Chamber was one of 28 Chambers in the state to receive the award. TACC President and CEO, Donna Duperron, appreciates receiving the award but understands that there is more work to be done. “We take great pride in representing the interests of the Torrance business community with government and work very hard to do so to a very high degree. There is much to be done in the State to help improve our business environment and the Torrance Chamber will continue to be an influential advocate for our local economy.”
In addition to the Chamber being recognized for its advocacy body of work, the Chamber’s Vice chair of Government Relations, Rob Van Lingen, was recognized by the CalChamber as the state’s “Small Business Advocate of the Year,” an award given to a volunteer in recognition for outstanding advocacy on behalf of small businesses. Van Lingen, who is the president of Van Lingen Towing and Pubic Service Impound in Torrance, assumed leadership of the Torrance Chamber’s government affairs operations in 2014 where he has helped substantially grow the chamber’s legislative advocacy program for small businesses. “Rob has been instrumental to the growth of our Government Affairs program,” comments Duperron, “he is an individual filled with passion for doing what is right for business.” In 2014, Van Lingen worked closely with Chamber staff in setting the advocacy strategy that resulted in a 76% success rate in stopping state legislation deemed bad for Torrance businesses.
Most notably, the CalChamber recognized Van Lingen for his work advocating against the state’s recent Mandated Paid Sick leave law. Although the law was passed in 2014, Rob has since led an initiative in 2015 to help small businesses adapt to the new paid sick leave mandate. Van Lingen chaired a Labor and Employment policy panel of attorneys and Human Resources leaders to help Torrance businesses adapt to the new mandate. As part of his efforts, Van Lingen also directed the Chamber to establish a Paid Sick Leave Compliance Resources portal on its website with helpful compliance information.
Following the morning summit, Torrance Business leaders, in partnership with leaders of the South Bay Association of Chambers of Commerce (SBACC), discussed issues facing the state with members of the State Senate and Assembly who represent the South Bay. There was also a special presentation given by Attorney General Kamala Harris during the morning seminar.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_separator height_2=”25″ height=”25″ show_border=”yes_border”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/4″][vc_column_text][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_column_text width=”1/1″ el_position=”first last”]
Brandon is the Governmental Affairs Coordinator for the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce. His primary responsibilities include facilitating the Chamber’s Governmental Affairs Policy (GAP) group, planning Chamber events with legislators, and facilitating the Chamber’s Political Action Committee (PAC). Feel free to contact him at any time.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]