April 4, 2019
We Want to Hear From You!   Please Complete the 2019 Chamber Member Survey

Click below:

As a token of our appreciation for completing the survey, you will be entered into a drawing to receive one of the following prizes: one ticket to the 50th Anniversary Chairman's Gala (the Signature Event); one ticket to the Chamber's Annual Cyber Conference; or an enhanced listing in the Chamber's online directory. You can select which prize you'd prefer.
Deadline for Early Bird Rates extended to April 15, 2019.

Take advantage and save almost 20%.

Weekly Legislative Update

As the 2019 General Assembly approached Sine Die, here are the latest legislative updates of particular note to business.
HB 1124: Regulations Impacting Small Businesses - Economic Impact Analyses.  
This bi-partisan bill requires State agencies to give specific consideration to the effects of new laws on small businesses, provides more transparency in the rule-making process, and provides certain mitigation measures in assessing monetary fines:
  *  waive penalty if violator corrects the violation            within 30 days
  *  assess violator's financial capacity and impose       a lesser penalty
  *  credit the cost of the remedy against the                 penalty assessed.
The bill passed the House on 3/13 by a vote of 139--0 and had a hearing in the Senate on 3/26. It is hard to assess its chances of passing because the same bill was introduced in 2018, passed the House, but died in the Senate.
HB640. Peace Orders - Workplace Violence.
This bill, if enacted into law, would provide Maryland employers standing to seek a peace order to protect an employee and others in their organizations from an imminent threat of harm while at the workplace.  While the House voted 137-0 in favor of the bill, Senate Judiciary voted against the Workplace Violence Bill. 
SB839 / HB994: Labor and Employment - Criminal Record Screening Practices (Ban the Box).
This bill Prohibits employers who employ 15 or more full-time employees from requiring an applicant for employment, before the first in-person interview, to disclose certain information regarding the criminal record of the applicant except under certain circumstances; authorizes the Commissioner of Labor and Industry to conduct an investigation to determine whether the Act has been violated on receipt of a written complaint of an applicant or employee; provides a civil fine of up to $500 for a violation of the Act. As of today, House passed with amendments. The Senate Refused to Concur with the House Amendments and has requested the House Recede, A Conference Committee has been Appointed. Stay tuned.
HB 1116:  Gender Diversity in the Boardroom - Annual Report
This bill will require certain corporations to annually report the number of female board members to the Dept. Of Assessment & Taxation  It passed 103 -34 in the House and 37 -5 in the Senate.
Do you have questions About the Legislative Process?

Our partners in the Maryland Chamber Federation at the Maryland Chamber of Commerce have put together a helpful "2019 Advocacy Handbook" to guide you through the steps of the legislative process and understand more about how the Chamber is working for you as the voice of business.


Strategic Alliance Partner
Join in welcoming three new member this week to the Chamber. We are happy to see them come onboard.
In honor of our 50th Anniversary Year, we will be recognizing some of our original members throughout the year in this section of the newsletter as well as some of our newest members!
HoCo Chamber Members Head to Portugal 

Join us for an exciting eight day trip to explore and discover Portugal this fall. 

For more information about our 2019 Chamber Trip  please call Kristi Simon at 410-730-4111 or email her at  ksimon@howardchamber.com .  

Last weeks travel answer:
Of course. Portugal produces a significant portion of the worlds cork.


Women's Leadership Conference Video

Here is an amazing video produced from our Women's Leadership Conference on March 7th.

We thank Pamela Vines of Troop Public Relations for donating the dynamic footage from from this event. 

Ten Chamber Members on The Daily Records 2019 Top 100 Women

We know our members are amazing, but so do the people at The Daily Record! Congratulations to the following incredible women for making Maryland's Top 100 Women for 2019. Two of these exciting leaders, Kelly Mitchell and Linda Ostovitz, also serve the community as Chamber board members.
  • Kelly Mitchell, MS, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, impactHR, LLC
  • Linda Ostovitz, Offit Kurman 
  • Violet M. Apple, Girl Scouts of Central Maryland
  • Traci Kodeck, MPH, HealthCare Access Maryland
  • America V. Lesh, Baltimore Gas and Electric Company
  • Danielle Grilli Marcus, Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, LLP
  • Alicia N. Ritchie, Miles & Stockbridge
  • Arlene R. Thayer, KatzAbosch
  • Janice Tippett, Millennium Marketing Solutions
  • Danielle Stager Zoller, Esq., Gordon Feinblatt, LL
Ribbon Cutting Set for Consumer Credit Counseling Service of MD 

Join us for this special ribbon cutting ceremony for one of our newest members.

April 4, 2019 - 5 - 7PM
6315 Hillside Court Ste. B
Columbia, MD 21046

*With support from our  2019 Ribbon Cutting Partner, State Farm - Alexander Brown .
Join Us for a Ribbon Cutting at Phoenix TS

April 17, 2019 
10420 Little Patuxent Parkway, Suite 250
Columbia, MD 21044

2019 Year of the Veteran Celebration and Resource Fair

This annual event has been developed to provide local veterans and their families the opportunity to meet with government agencies and non-profit organizations dedicated to proving services, support and jobs to veterans. 

April 8, 2019 - 4 - 8PM
Howard Community College
RCF Student Services Building, 4th Floor
10901 Little Patuxent Parkway
Columbia, MD 21044

2019 Business Appreciation Week

Howard County businesses of all types and sizes are invited to take part in the 2019 Business Appreciation Week from April 22 - April 26! As a part of our ongoing mission to improve the resources available to our business community, each year teams of ambassadors from the Howard County Economic Development Authority, the Chamber, Government Officials and Elected Officials, including County Executive Ball.

Meetings Matter Expo & Luncheon

Join Visit Howard County, in partnership with the Howard County Chamber of Commerce and Howard County Economic Development Authority, for Meetings Matter Expo & Luncheon.

Learn about incredible meeting venue offerings in your own backyard plus realize the economic impact your meetings and events have on the local economy, community, and your business.

April 25, 2019
11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
The Main Street Ballroom, Ellicott City MD

This is a free event for area businesses that hold meetings and events

Apprenticeship Maryland

When your business participates in the 
Apprenticeship Maryland program, y ou get a chance to cultivate a highly trained 
workforce and help 12th grade students to begin their careers in high-demand fields.

Apprenticeship Maryland is an incredibl e
opportunity to have a positive impact on the
career development of qualified students, and  your company bottom line. Benefits of participation in the program include:
  • Streamlined Recruiting
  • Trained potential Full-Time Employees
  • Improved Retention
Marriott's high-end Autograph brand will replace Columbia's Sheraton

The  Sheraton Columbia Town Center Hotel will soon undergo $20 million in renovations to bring the property up to par with the four-star standards of its new Marriott Autograph flag.
Owner and developer Costello Construction will add 70 rooms, bringing the total to 290, and update the entire interior and exterior of the hotel that sits on Lake Kittamaqundi at 10207 Wincopin Cir. The focus will be on creating a "high quality" and "luxury" product, Costello Construction President  David Costello said.

The Business Monthly Celebration of the Howard County Chamber Issue

The Howard County Chamber and The Business Monthly are once again teaming up for our annual Celebration of the Chamber issue this June. The Chamber and our members will be featured along with our events, awards and special programs. The Business Monthly will be offering advertisements in the issue until May 1st. If you are interested, you can reach out to kathy@bizmonthly.com for more information.
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