February 14, 2019
Week 6 Legislative Update

Let Your Voices Be Heard Once More

Once again, we need voices from across the state to help us in the fight against $15 minimum wage. You can be sure that when business owners, like yourself, take the time to testify and show their very real concerns about how this bill will impact their livelihoods - the leadership listens.

While we had an excellent showing last week, we are still in this battle and the road won't be easy. Last week's Economic Matters Committee Meeting was indeed a marathon, but we thank those of you who took the time to write letters and more importantly, visit Annapolis, to participate in the legislative process. The Senate Finance Committee hearing on the $15 Minimum Wage bill will be next Thursday, February 21st at 1 p.m.

If you will join us ( and please tell others as well), please sign-up to attend here. We need you to add your voice to the fight.
Other Legislative Matters

The minimum wage debate continues to dominate headlines, but there are a host of other employment and labor related bills making their way through the legislative process. Some of the bills being considered are:
Local Legislation Update

Several bills have been introduced as local legislation by the Howard County legislative delegation. Of those bills being considered, the Chamber has been watching Ho.Co. 3-19, Impact Fee Calculation. While touted as "impact fee" legislation, this bill actually increases the surcharge fees developers pay. For nearly three weeks, a work group has been meeting to further analyze the proposed legislation and to gather facts in this most complex bill. The delegation has decided to hold 3-19 for one more week.

The delegation did a straw vote on Ho.Co. 26-19 - Howard County Housing Commission - Subsidiary Entities, sponsored by Delegate Feldmark, which passed.

Other business related bills considered, but with no action were:
  • Howard County - Alcoholic Beverages - Marketplace License, Ho.Co. 6-19; Sponsored by: Delegate Hill
  • Howard County - Ethics - Limit on Developer Contributions, Ho. Co. 12-19; Sponsored by: Delegate Miller
  • Howard County - Collection and Allocation of County Transfer Tax, Ho. Co. 30-19; Sponsored by: Chair, Howard County Delegation
Got 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.

Senate Overturns Governor Hogan's Order on School Start Date

Also this week in Annapolis, the State Senate voted to overturn Governor Larry Hogan's Executive Order that required school districts to start classes after Labor Day and end by June 15th while completing a 180-day school year. The legislation will now move to the House of Delegates for consideration.
Howard Co. Delegation to Hold Public Hearing for Input on Statewide Issues

The Howard County Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly has announced a public hearing to gather feedback on statewide issues.

February 20, 2019 - 7:30PM
Banneker Room, George Howard Building
3430 Courthouse Drive
Ellicott City, MD 


March 6 - YPN Mixer at Main Event

Avoiding Utility Company Scams

The people at CQI Associates, who we partner with for the Chamber Energy Co-Op, have just sent us a message that they have been hearing from some customers about some utility company scams going around. These include phone calls warning service is going to be shut off because of unpaid bills and people going door to door saying they need to verify customer's accounts.

The good news is, they've got you covered! Whether you are already a customer, or just want to know more about these scams, CQI is offering two webinars this month.

February 19th or 26th at 1 p.m.
You can register at www.cqiassociates.com.
Strategic Alliance Partner
We are thankful for many things this Thanksgiving, but especially, our newest members! Welcome to the Chamber!
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!
  • StratWealth - 16 Years
  • Restaurant Association of Maryland - 15 Years
  • McFarlin Insurance Agency - 9 Years
  • SuperGreen Solutions - 5 Years
  • River Hill Sunoco - 4 Years
  • Anavo Transformation Solutions, LLC - 3 Years
  • Bridges to Housing Stability, Inc. - 3 Years
  • Homewood Suites - Columbia/Laurel - 3 Years
  • St. John Properties, Inc. - 2 Years
  • Blossoms of Hope - 1 Year
  • mCloud Technology - 1 Year
  • Prestige Wheel House - 1 Year
Getting to Know Lisa Anderson, CPA, and Anavo Transformation Solutions

At the Chamber, we are so proud of our members, and this month, in honor of Black History Month, we wanted to take a moment in each of our newsletters to shine a spotlight on one of our members! This week, we spoke to Lisa Anderson, CPA, Strategic Business Advisor & Virtual CFO at 

Tell me about your company and how you got started.

Anavo Transformation Solutions is an organizational growth and development consulting firm for small businesses in and around the federal government contracting community.  We offer strategic business advisory, virtual CFO, and federal government contract compliance support. Our mission is to help a million small businesses achieve their first or next million dollars in profitable revenue. We follow a proprietary five step process to help companies achieve their million dollar goals. This is the process I've personally used over the course of 21 years as I grew my business from startup to a multi-million dollar enterprise. It's also the process I've included in my recently released book, Beyond The Plateau: Five Simple Steps To Scale Your Way To A Million Dollar Business. 

In 1997, I formed my first business, DeAnder Associates, LLC, a financial management and government contracting compliance company. I started that business because I watched small businesses struggle to get and keep contracts because of their lack of knowledge and understanding of the regulations. We quickly became known for our audit readiness approach, our DCAA audit pass rate, and our financial management reporting that provided companies with extreme insight on their businesses. 

Having worked with small businesses for so many years, it became clear that in addition to needing compliance and financial management, they also needed strategic advisory to effectively grow profitable and sustainable businesses. In 2014, we started the process of rebranding the company and Anavo Transformation Solutions was born, giving us the ability to work more intimately with small business CEOs and providing greater impact on their success. 

What advice would you give to aspiring black entrepreneurs?

To aspiring black entrepreneurs, I say simply GO FOR IT! You have the skills, talent, and expertise to accomplish whatever it is you aspire to achieve. The only limit to your success is you, so don't stand in your way. Stand clear and confident in your competence. There is absolutely NO ONE out there like you! Let your competence open doors for you, and when the doors do open, remain confident that your communication will turn heads. Yes, you earned that seat at the table because you commanded attention and respect. 
As you move along your entrepreneurial journey remember, just because you can do it does not mean you should do it. There are a lot of moving parts in a business and in order for your business to THRIVE you must keep your head in the game and focused on your mission, marketing, money, and management. That said, get help early in your journey. Start building your A-Team on day one; that team of professionals who will hug your business and help guide you and protect you as you move along your journey. This includes your accountant, attorney, banker, insurance agent and human resources.
Finally, find a mentor. Engage with someone who has been where you are trying to go; someone you respect and admire and you would enjoy working with; someone who is open and sharing and extremely interested in helping you grow. I've personally had mentors at all phases of my 30+ year career and it's because of them that I've been able to gain my level of success as quickly as I did. 
Maximum Fitness 24/7 Grand Opening

Join us for a ribbon cutting ceremony and grand opening for one of our newest members, Maximum Fitness 24/7. They are also a veteran owned business.

February 20, 2019 - NOON - 2PM
7351 Assateague Dr.
Jessup, MD 21045

With support from our 2019 Ribbon Cutting Partner, State Farm - Alexander Brown.
Union Home Mortgage Ribbon Cutting Set

Come celebrate one of our newest members, Union Home Mortgage, at a ribbon cutting ceremony and grand opening event.

February 21, 2019 - 3 - 5PM
Union Home Mortgage
8840 Stanford Blvd, Suite 3100
Columbia, MD 21045

Opioid Workforce Innovation Fund Announced

The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation has just announced the creation of the Opioid Workforce Innovation Fund (OWIF). the OWIF will support local organizations developing innovative solutions that lead to improved employment outcomes for individuals and businesses who have been impacted by the opioid crisis.

Leadership Howard County Project - Mediation & Conflict Resolution Center Survey

One of the projects currently underway at Leadership Howard County (LHC), is surveying Howard County residents and organizations to identify the need for affordable mediation services for co-parenting.

CA Holding Information Sessions About Serving on Board of Directors

Columbia's village elections are coming up soon! And this year, seven villages will hold elections to fill seats on Columbia Association's (CA) Board of Directors. Columbia Association is hosting information sessions on 2/19 and 2/23, so that anyone interested can learn more about CA and serving on CA's Board of Directors.
Consumer Protection Forum with Senator Van Hollen and Attorney General Brian Frosh

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and The Howard County Office of Consumer Protection for a discussion focused on your rights as a consumer.

February 28, 2019 - 6:30 - 8:30PM
North Laurel Community Center
9411 Whiskey Bottom Road
Laurel, MD 20723 

Read more
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