Members of the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition took part in a fly-in this week focused on infrastructure, immigration, energy, trade including the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and other issues impacting businesses and communities across the Midwest and Great Lakes.
Fifty-four meetings took place on Capitol Hill with legislators and committee staff as part of the annual event and included information on policy specifics and critical infrastructure projects for the region. Our collective voice is stronger together and as a region, the Great Lakes has a combined GDP of more than $5.7 trillion, making it the third largest economy in the world.
Specifically, Andy Johnston and Josh Lunger spoke with federal lawmakers on:
Transportation infrastructure including funding for a new Soo Lock, the Gordie Howe International Bridge, I-96 reconstruction and enhancement, and interchange improvements to serve business demand in Walker.
Immigration for highly skilled labor through the H1B visa program.
Support for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GRLI) including maintaining the current funding level of $300 million.
Other issues on the Chamber’s radar with federal lawmakers in Washington this week include tax reform, education policy and the changes to the Affordable Care Act.
Special thanks to Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters and Congressmen Bill Huizenga, Fred Upton, Mike Bishop, Paul Mitchell, Jack Bergman and Tim Walberg for meeting in person with the Chamber.