Hi, I’m Gene Barr, president of the Pennsylvania Chamber.
Welcome to this month’s Pennsylvania Chamber Minute.
With just a few weeks left in 2018, the Chamber is gearing up to advocate on behalf of the state’s broad-based business community when lawmakers get sworn into office on New Year’s Day. Our member-driven 2019 legislative agenda, which can now be found under the advocacy section of our website, reflects the policy goals that we believe will best set Pennsylvania up for a strong economic future. This includes items such as reforms that will provide balance in labor and employment laws and regulations; policies that will encourage Pennsylvania’s dynamic energy markets to thrive; and efforts to ensure that taxpayer dollars are being spent responsibly and efficiently.
Among the main items topping our policy priority list in the New Year will be reducing Pennsylvania’s Corporate Net Income Tax rate, which at 9.99 percent is the highest effective rate in the nation and continues to drive investment and job opportunities to other states. The Pennsylvania Chamber is also committed in 2019 to restoring structure and fairness within the state’s legal system. Just this month, the American Tort Reform Association issued its latest “Judicial Hellholes” report, and listed Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas as being among the top 10 worst legal climates in the country. It’s true that employers regularly examine state’s justice systems when determining where to locate and invest, and Pennsylvania’s is unfortunately well known to be unbalanced and fraught with costly delays. As the new session approaches, we’ll be reengaging to talk about the need for venue reform, which would prevent trial lawyers from filing their cases in areas where there is no tie to the plaintiff of defendant; among other commonsense legal reforms. Our organization is also proud to be engaged with the Pennsylvania Coalition for Civil Justice Reform in helping to bring employers the predictability and certainty they want and deserve.
As always, we encourage our members to visit our website for details on our legislative agenda, and to reach out to us with comments and suggestions on how we can build a more robust business climate in the New Year.
Have a happy and safe holiday season, and we look forward to working with you in 2019.
Thanks for spending a minute of your time with the Pennsylvania Chamber, the Statewide Voice of Business.