March 2016
Advocacy Takes Center Stage at Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism
By: Todd Bornhauser, Chamber President 

As the Minnesota Legislative session starts up on March 8th, it highlights one of the important roles of the Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism - advocacy.  The mission of the Northfield Area Chamber is to lead in the creation, promotion, and enhancement of a healthy business environment for the Northfield area.  Our vision is to be THE business community resource.  One of the goals to accomplish our mission is advocacy:  influence and shape public policy to reflect business priorities while enhancing the climate for our member's growth, by monitoring and educating members and the community on business related issues, utilizing the resources of the Minnesota and US Chamber, and facilitating candidate forums.  
 
Most of our efforts are local, since the majority of our members are small, (fewer than 10 employees) locally owned businesses.  We place a strong emphasis on being seen rather that heard, being selective in our expression of our comments and positions statements.  While our protesting would get us immediate attention if we blocked the entrance ramp from Highway 3 to 19, or filled city hall council chamber with angry protesters shouting slogans and holding signs, we find it more productive to have professional and respectful dialogue with our council and school board members, both at a meeting session as well as one-on-one discussions.  We encourage our members to get involved and become committee members, as well as attend meetings and make public comment on issues that impact their business.   We pass along critical information that will have an impact on their business.  In addition, we provide educational opportunities and host meetings for businesses to receive further information.  Finally, we meet with leader's first hand to discuss business concerns.
 
We are also members of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, and utilize their products and services in helping our members, since all Northfield businesses are impacted at the state level as well.  We utilize their lobbying staff, take advantage and offer their educational programs to our members, and participate in their group programming.  Programs such as Business Day at the Capital, Sessions Priorities Dinner, seminars, webinars and forums all add value and educate members on topics that impact business.
 
In addition, because this is an election year, we will be conducting candidate forums at local and state level.  We feel it is important to our membership to hear their positions on issues that impact the business community.   While we will encourage our members to get involved, to run for office or volunteer for a committee or advisory council, we will not endorse any candidates. 
 
We take our role seriously in advocating for our members and the business community as a whole.  Advocacy is a critical leg in the chair we provide our members in creating a healthy business environment for our business community.  Join us March 29th as Doug Loon, President of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, outlines the legislative priorities of the MN Chamber and the legislative session.

Upcoming Events
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Join us for Business DayS at the Capital
By Doug Loon, President of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce 

The start of the legislative session is around the corner, and the activity promises to be fast paced. It's more important than ever to make your voices heard.

Join your peers for two Business DayS at the Capitol this year - double the opportunity to advance your priorities face-to-face with legislators. We've streamlined the agenda to fit your busy schedules and have narrowed the focus to two topics very important to the statewide business community.

Please mark your calendars: March 30 - transportation investment; April 20 - tax relief.

Our No. 1 priority overall is to reduce the statewide business property tax - the extra tax paid by businesses above and beyond what they send to local governments. Most onerous about this assessment is that it is a fixed cost and it is growing on auto pilot, increasing each year with an inflator index. All businesses pay this tax, whether they own or lease property, profitable or not. Reducing this tax will not affect what businesses pay to cities, schools and counties, and it will not shift any taxes to homeowners.

It's also time that Minnesota passes a 10-year plan that provides strategic and sustained investment in our roads, bridges and transit.  The package must be comprehensive; needs must be addressed in metro and rural areas.  We need a dependable transportation system that moves people and products efficiently and safely throughout the state. That requires regular investment in maintenance and strategic improvements. 2016 is the year to invest.

Both Business DayS at the Capitol will start with a luncheon and a moderated program to hear firsthand from key legislators on the status of these two priorities. Business leaders will then be bused to the Capitol for prearranged legislative appointments. The events will wind down with an informal reception to network and share information.

The projected state surplus is an excellent opportunity to invest in our economic and physical infrastructure. There is ample money to pass strategic business property tax relief and sustained transportation funding. Both investments are critical if we want to make Minnesota ready for the future.

Nothing makes a greater impact on legislators than hearing firsthand from their constituents. Register today for both Business Day(S) - March 30 to push for transportation funding and April 20 to advance business property tax relief. 

I look forward to seeing you. Together, we will make Minnesota ready for change and ready to grow.
Doug Loon is president of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce - www.mnchamber.com .
Thank You to Our Sponsors:
Welcome
New Members!!
February
 
Sunset Studio 
10754 Farrel Avenue
Northfield, MN 55057
507-838-5133
Primary Contact: Judy Saye-Willis

Farm Bureau Financial Services
301 Division Street
Northfield, MN 55057
507-645-4212
Primary Contact: Daniel Hummel
February's Top 
Chamber Buck 
Redeemers: 

#1
 

#2


#3 


The Chamber Buck program is another member benefit offered by the Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism. We encourage members to proudly display their "Chamber Bucks Accepted Here" stickers and promote their acceptance in their own marking materials. For ideas please contact the Chamber office. 

According to a study conducted by Local First "local retailers return an average of 52 percent of their revenue to the local economy, compared with just 14 percent for the chain retailers.  Similarly, the local restaurants re-circulate an average of 79 percent of their revenue locally, compared to 30 percent for the chain eateries." 

logo

Other members that took advantage of the Chamber Buck program in February include:

A Bag Lady
maurices
Apple Bee's Grill & Bar
Mainstream Boutique 
Tandem Bagels
Basil's Pizza
Napa Auto Parts - Northfield
The Hideaway Coffee House & Wine Bar 
Hogan Brothers 

Remember Chamber Bucks
make great gifts or employee incentives. Available all year in $5, $10 and $25 denominations 
Ambassador's In Action!
Linder & Associates
507-663-0381

From left to right:
Eric Frank, Re-Max Advantage Plus Shawn McLeran, Cannon Valley Vet Clinic
Jason Linder, Linder & Associates
Trisha Freeman, First National Bank
Eric Linder, Linder & Associates
Marty Benson, Community Resource Bank
Lindsay Reddy, Northfield Area Chamber
Amy Voight, A Team Landscaping
Jan Stanton, Frandsen Bank & Trust; Laura Meyers, Linder & Associatess


KYMN Radio 
507-645-5695

River Valley Eye Professionals 
507-645-9202

From left to right:
Marty Benson - Community Resource      Bank 

Business Spotlight

 

Business Name: T & G Pet Lodge & Training Center
Contact Person: Nicole Preste, Operations Manager
Email Address: info@tandgpetlodge.com
Phone Number: 952-652-2300
Physical Address: 2345 35th Street West, Webster 
Website URL: www.tandgpetlodge.com


How did the business get started?
T & G Pet Lodge and Training Center was started with the idea of endless outdoor playroom for dogs. The facilities that I toured did not give the activity level that my dogs needed or the room to run and romp around. We started this pet lodging business to create a facility that met our standards for cleanliness and safety. Our facility is state of the art, and this gives us the ability to give outstanding pet care while your pets are with us.  T & G Pet Lodge & Training centers features:
  • AC/Heat Controlled Building
  • 5'x8' Sleeping areas
  • Outdoor play areas
  • 20' x 20' Indoor Play Area
  • 5,000 Square Feet Obedience yard
  • 16,600 square feet of K9 artificial grass play yards
  • 6 acres fenced in for outside play and safety
  • 30 Dog maximum means more one on one time with our guests
  • Owner on site with 24 hour surveillance
What products or services do you sell?
Our services we provide: Dog Lodging (over night stays), Dog Training (general family pet obedience & gun dog training), basic bath and retail pet goods.

What's the one thing your business is known for over your competitors?
Our outside play area's are one thing that our business is known for.  A 5,000 square foot outside obedience yard, 16,600 square feet of K9 artificial grass play years and an additional six acres of fenced in outside play area really sets T & G Pet Lodge apart from our competitors.

Who is your target market?
Are target market is those customers looking to give their dog the country vacation with endless play opportunities. Our training packages are geared to help family pet owners have a better understanding of how dog behave.

Have economic changes affected your business?
No

How do you market your business?
Our marketing strategy is pretty simple in we offer new customers a 50% off discount for their first visit. Attending different events and gathering information to give the best possible care for their pet. Our website gives great information about we have to offer.

Additional Information 
We are open for tours during our business hours PLEASE FEEL FREE AND VISIT !!!
9-5 PM M-F

Chamber Happenings

            Morning Business Brew at the Northfield Area Family YMCA  


 
           Business After Hours at Hvistendahl, Moersch, Dorsey & Hahn 

Member News
FREE YOUTH FASTPITCH SOFTBALL CLINIC at Carleton College. Improve or sharpen your softball skills with this K-12 girls of all abilities levels. Sunday, March 6th noon - 2pm. Carleton Rec Center Fieldhouse (off Hwy 19) Contact Amy Erickson (head coach) at aerickson@carleton.edu for more details. No pre-registration necessary. 

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Save the Date for Northfield's perennial EARTH DAY celebration. Saturday April 23, 2016 "A Healthy Earth for the Health of All". Come Join Earth Day's free skill-sharing workshops. Saturday April 23rd, 10a-4p join a compost bin building workshop, an Electric Vehicle session/demo, be informed with the Northfield Area Community Solar update, attend CRQP workshop, create a a garden bed for "Free Food Help Yourself", help out in the Carleton Arboretum, and much much more... At 4:30 on Saturday April 23rd at the Weitz Center, check out Earthly Exhibitors, Updates form "key" sustainable organizations, and a Community Potluck/Free Soup Supper. Questions: northfieldearthday@gmail.com. Registration starts March 17th at: www.northfieldearthday.com
 
 
Do you have business news to share? We want to hear about it! Please contact Lindsay at lindsay@northfieldchamber.com to have your big announcement in next months newsletter. 
Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce |  Lindsay@northfieldchamber.com   http://www.northfieldchamber.com
 205 Third Street, Suite B
Northfield, MN 55057