(This editorial was written by Chamber Board President Todd Andres and published in the Herald and News.)
As president of the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce, I’ve had the opportunity to talk to businesses large and small about the potential impact of Measure 97 on the local economy. Simply put, Measure 97 is a bad idea that will hurt our local businesses.
Everybody wants better schools, but Measure 97 isn’t the right answer. The proposal would put a tax on sales of 2.5% for companies with sales of more than $25 million. Some larger companies aren’t registered as “C” corporations, the only kind of business targeted in the measure, so despite their size, they wouldn’t pay. And because it’s a tax on sales, not profits, some businesses with high sales but low profit margins would be hurt far more than others. The only choice many businesses would have is to pass this tax on sales directly on to consumers.
(Disclaimer: we don't get up to these kinds of shenanigans at the Chamber offices, I can assure you!) This is part of a new monthly web comic series. Enjoy!
This month's Chamberisms: "Hello, From the Chamber Side"
It's cold and drizzly today, this Monday afternoon as I sit working away at my keyboard. I have plenty to do, I'm not bored by any means, and I L-O-V-E my job (I don't consider this shameless pandering because it's true). It would sure be nice to have some company here in my office though. I tried getting a giant stuffed wildebeest but I was thwarted by my inability to win the lottery. And Perky is here, on my desk, but he's the quiet type. If only there were some way to drive traffic to my office on days like this...
Ha! How about that segue? Not bad right? Not good either?
I guess I need help marketing myself and my skills. Good thing we have this Traffic Driver program thingie. It's an extra level of help from the Chamber, marketing your business and getting some ins and outs of social media. As you know, dear readers, I am a newbie here to the Chamber. As we transition, I'm still learning what my role is, exactly, and Heather assures me I'm doing great (she's so supportive!). But I have come to realize that I can sure learn a lot from her about marketing. Sure, she taught me everything I know about customer service, but I was headed to Literature-land with my English degree...not marketing. The fork in my path less taken has been a winding, yellow-brick-road sort of path and now, here I am. Y'all are stuck with me.
Did you? Because I sure didn't until I brought up the idea I had for members only, rattling around in my head like a dry pea in a can.
So here is my idea: what if we had a scavenger hunt on our social media sites (Instagram and Facebook, mostly, and announced in the Connections Newsletter) that was for members only. They could win cool stuff like free coffee, free lunch, free stuff. Good stuff. Not just any stuff. And what if the scavenger hunt was to identify the location of the Chamber mascot at another Chamber member's business? What a great idea right?! Who doesn't like free stuff.
So I thought, what would be a great Chamber mascot? A coyote would be appropriate for the area, but maybe not very endearing. An eagle would be cool but I feel like that's been done before (how and where I do not know; don't ask me tough questions like that). Ooh, river otters are totally adorable. Maybe...I got it! A wildebeest. I found a really cool one too.
I almost don't even have words to type for you. But I feel like I owe it to my fans (I know you're out there) to describe what #RBIS16 was like. If you followed us on Instagram and Facebook, you got to see my nerdy self going live at the event. That is about as close as I can bring you but let me try to recap.
First, the people. We had an amazing turn out at this year's event. So. Many. People. It was fantastic, all the ideas and learning and networking flying around were almost tangible. We had amazing exhibitors. I think I might have made a few friends for life. We had terrific speakers. You met a few on the blog, but they have layers you just can't express in a mere five minute interview. The food was amazing. My feet had their own pulse from all the running around and my face hurt from all the smiling. It was so much fun.
But now it's over. The posters are recycled. The soda cans are empty. The flyers are outdated. The social media posts gather no more likes. And I have that sort of after Christmas morning feeling...where have all the pretty ribbons gone?!
Imagine, if you will, that you are about six foot, eight inches tall and that your name rhymes with…LeCron Rames. At six foot eight, finding a suit…or even casual clothes…with some style might be a bit of a challenge, amiright? That’s where Athlete’s Brand comes in.
Meet the founder of Athlete’s Brand, Kyle Mauch. Growing up in rural Klamath Falls, Oregon has a lot to do with the success of Kyle’s endeavors: a small town, where sports rule and those who excel at sports are the kings of the county. But how much of that has anything to do with Kyle’s success in the big world outside of insular Klamath Falls?
(click the sideways triangle or you end up at YouTube's website and not reading my blog which is a travesty)
By now, I would hope you have heard of the Rural Business & Innovation Summit 2016. We have been calling it #RBIS16 because it's much shorter and kinda catchy.
If you don't know, #RBIS16 is a gathering of business minded folks who can learn, collaborate, and participate in workshops geared toward making business in the Basin successful. We have some amazing speakers lined up for the two day event, and I was lucky enough to chat with one of our speakers, Ruth Miles.
Ruth works for the Office of Small Business Assistance, Oregon Secretary of State, as a small business advocate. Here is a picture of her so that when you go to #RBIS16, you know whose autograph you are asking for:
How many visitors do you think we have calling us here at the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce every day? Let me tell you, the number is more than the size of a Hobbit's bread basket. In fact, our top two viewed businesses this month on Klamath.org/directory were hotels. But I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s start with Reason Number 1 why hotels should be Chamber Members.
By now, you've probably figured out that there is some new person at the Klamath Chamber, posting all these strange things on Facebook and the Chamber blog and a few other places, too. At least, I hope you have noticed! It's a lot of work being this weird.
A little about me: I'm the same age as Heather, so if you don't know how old she is then you don't know how old I am. I have a Bachelor's degree in English. I'm a published author (hence the reason I have taken over this blog for my own nefarious purposes). I am a painter (nothing you've seen, I'm guessing). I'm a knitter. A dreamer. A candlestick maker (okay, technically, I haven't made candlesticks yet but it's on the list). I'm a wife to an amazing husband and the mother to two fantastic daughters, ages 21 and 11 (I love to use parentheses even though I know I shouldn't use them as much as I do and all my professors would be so annoyed with me right now).
I bring my wits to the table*, and the ability to turn a neat phrase. I have extensive customer service and marketing experience, and I love showing others how they can use social media to their own advantage. I'm excited to work for the Klamath County Chamber of Commerce and implement some of the ideas I have on how to market our members, build relationships, and provide a measureable asset. I'm a bit quirky, love to laugh, but know how to work hard and get things done. (*try to)