What's NEW from your NACM affiliate for   February

Monthly Updates                                             February 2017
Presidents Day 2017





Are we having fun yet?

A note from Jon Flora, President & CEO

In 1979, Cartoonist Bill Griffith coined the now-famous catch phrase: "Are we having fun yet?"   One month into 2017 and that phrase fits oh so well.  Wow!

As Americans from coast to coast grab pitch forks and prepare to storm the capital steps, perhaps we can use this President's Day as a sort of touchstone.

America is a pretty great place.  We have our problems and certainly we have major leadership challenges on both sides of the political spectrum locally and nationally.  But, let's remember that we've managed to weather storms for 240 years.  We will continue to survive particularly if:
  • We exercise our right to vote.  Outside of presidential elections, voter turnout in Seattle, Honolulu and Anchorage is typically 30% or less.  If you are among the 70+% that doesn't vote on a regular basis, you don't have a lot of room to complain when your taxes are too high, your city council makes poor decisions, or the folks in D.C. are doing whatever it is they do which is usually questionable.  Your vote makes a difference.  Cast it.
  • We all become informed on issues and don't simply believe the latest Facebook post from a long lost cousin.  It has become much harder to find accurate reporting but it's out there.  Do your homework, make your own judgments and figure out what you believe.  Then advocate for it.
  • Use that electronic device in your hand as a telephone.  Stop texting, emailing and reading social media.  Engage in real conversation with real people.  You'll learn a lot and solve problems quicker.  The other night, I was reading a fairly thoughtful post from a former co-worker about current affairs.  I haven't seen or talked to him in three years.  I was about to reply but instead used the Telephone App.  We're having lunch next week and I can't to see him because he's a fun and really smart guy.  Our electronic toys don't give us that kind of result. 
Use Presidents Day as a time to take a deep breath, look in the mirror and think about what is really important.  Then, let's make it happen together hopefully with calm and thoughtful discourse.

As for our NACM world, you'll find below a legislative update from Olympia, information about Credit Congress, and the usual calendar updates. 

You will also find a Special Section about the end of sugar cane in Hawaii.  The close of this 145 year-old industry is an important event for our 50th state and worthy of attention by our entire nation.   Although inevitable, it is hard to watch an entire industry go away forever. 

As always, thank you for your involvement in NACM.  We appreciate your business and friendship.  And, we welcome your telephone calls anytime!


Legislative Update
NACM advocating for you 

NACM's work in Olympia is usually limited to legislative activity surrounding credit-specific areas.  This year, we are also monitoring a few other areas.

This includes the following:

HB 1486: It allows employees to levy a wage lien on an employer.  The wage lien would surpass a real property or personal loan which a bank has for its lien and allow employees to have the first lien authority.  This bill is in the House Labor & Workplace Standards Committee and is opposed by the bankers association.  

HB 1061/SSB 5043: Concerning collection agency transaction fees for processing electronic payments.  This legislation will add a 2% transaction fee when a debtor pays for their debt via a credit card.   Currently, collection agencies (including NACM) must absorb fees which has become an issue given the growth in credit card usage.

HB 1145/SB 5456:  Concerning unpaid accounts.  This legislation amends the definition of "account receivable" for purposes of the six-year statute of limitations. Defines "account receivable" for purposes of the statute governing prejudgment interest, and provides that where a forbearance concerns accounts receivable or goods and services that are not accounts receivable, the obligations are deemed liquidated and, in the absence of an agreement which provides a date on which the moneys become due, specifies when interest begins to accrue. 

Additionally, the Governor's proposed budget seeks a significant increase in the Business & Occupation Tax and implementation of Capital Gains and Carbon Footprint taxes.  The beneficiary is intended to be public education.

NACM is a big believer in lifelong education and the need for proper funding. We also believe there are other ways to solve the current funding problem.  

We especially take issue with an increase in the B & O Tax (which would be 2.5% of gross revenues)  because it hurts small and medium-sized business - the majority of our membership.  We have looked at the impact it could have on our association's budget to recognize the negative consequences for all businesses.

The proposed Capital Gains Tax penalizes those who are savers and is a first step toward an income tax which is unconstitutional in Washington.  The Carbon tax was already turned down by voters  in 2015.

All of this suggests that our elected representatives in Olympia have their work cut out for them as they work to find budget solutions.  NACM is watching their activity and will continue to report as the current session unfolds.

Further information on the three bills or other legislative activity is available simply by writing to: feedback@nacmbcs.org

NACM lands on Waikiki this month

On Thursday, February 16th, we will be offering a special day of education for our Hawaii members -  and any mainlanders who are traveling to the islands for business or pleasure.

We'll have speakers on Hawaiian Lien Laws, Hawaii's GET and TAT taxes, Fraud, Credit Card and Check Processing, Automated A/R, EBPP and more. We will also welcome representatives from some of our business partners to present and train on their latest products and services -- all of which are available to you through NACM Business Credit Services.  

The program offerings will be of interest to all credit and financial professionals, so be sure to invite your associates to come along.  

Registration is robust with both Hawaiian and mainland members, so make your reservation today.   Deadline is February 9th.   

Click here for more information and to register.  See you in Honolulu!
NACM Collections stands ready to help you

Upcoming Education Opportunities from NACM

NACM National Credit Congress
NACM National Credit Congress
Register Today...and save money

NACM is headed to the state where everything is big and bold, from the tastes, to the culture to the sights! Join us where history merges with the modern and country collides with the city to create the beauty and brass of Texas! 

We invite you to Grapevine, nestled between Dallas and Ft. Worth, to share in our Texas-sized experience June 11-14, 2017 at the National Credit Congress & Exposition.  Click on the link below to reserve your spot.

Register Today !   Early Bird ends February 15, 2017.
Scholarships for Credit Congress 
February 10th deadline

If you're interested in attending Credit Congress, keep in mind that NACM Business Credit Services offers scholarship awards. Through the generosity of generations of donors, NACM BCS is able to award financial assistance to our members for professional coursework and/or conferences and seminars.

The deadline to apply for a Credit Congress Scholarship is February 10th. Awards will be decided on February 13th offering you time to take advantage of Early Bird Registration that ends   February  15th.

Take advantage of this opportunity by clicking here to apply.  
Exclusive Member Party Kicks Off Congress

Join us for the annual opening member party at  Top Golf, a sprawling entertainment venue with a high-tech driving range and swanky lounge with drinks and games.  Whether you're a golfer or not, you will have a n unforgettable experience with friends and co-workers. Enjoy great food and drinks, upscale amenities and competitive fun everyone can enjoy.  Or just socialize in a fun environment.  

Plan to be with us on Sunday night and look for more details to come soon!

News from Our World
Important Business Highlights

Stay current on news from communities served by NACM Business Credit Services and our partners . 

Click on the following links for the latest:

Seattle              Seattle Leads the Tower Crane Count Again

Alaska             Conoco Philips announces oil discovery

Tacoma           Pierce County real estate market recovers

Ports               Northwest Seaport Alliance reports high container volumes

Special Section:  
The Final Days of Hawaiian Sugar
We live with mergers, acquisitions and business cessations every day.  But, when an entire industry goes away that shaped a kingdom, a culture and a state, it's worth pausing to reflect on what that means.  Hawaii is a long way away from anywhere. We think of it as exotic with beautiful beaches, sunsets and cocktails with little umbrellas. That all may be true, but it's home to 1.4 million people making a living in a multitude of ways.  One of those is agriculture famously known for pineapple and sugar cane. The pineapple industry is a fraction of what it once was having been wound down more than a decade ago.  Now, with the end of sugar-growing in Hawaii, the end of another era comes to a close.  We take a moment to read about the reasons for it , what's next for the employees and the last growing company.
The last sugar harvest
The end of a 145 year industry

In December, the final sugar was harvested on Maui and the last employees of Hawaiian Cane & Sugar laid off. Learn more including what the future may be for the future of agriculture in Hawaii.

  Read the story
The last sugar ship  
Historic final run

The last run of the Moku Pahu recently ended with the final delivery of Maui sugar to the Crockett, California C&H Sugar refining plant.  The delivery marks the end of Hawaiian sugar.

Those TV commercials
A look at sweet memories

We all grew up with the C & H Sugar commercials on TV.  Take one final look and sing along.  You still remember the words!


February Industry Group Schedule
Collaborate with your counterparts

2.  9     Floor
2.14     Transportation
             Ad Media
2.15     Tacoma Construction
2.16     W iring
2.21     HVAC
2.23     Eastside Construction            


2.15     Alaska Suppliers and Food


No Groups this month



        16        Hawaii Winter Forum - Honolulu, HI
                20        President's Day 

                10-20   Board Elections Online

                11        Lunch & Learn - Bankruptcy


              TBD       May Annual Seminar


           11- 14      National Credit Congress - Grapevine, TX

NACM Business Credit Services | P.O. Box 3665
Seattle WA  98124  |  800.423.5710