Members of AIM’s Board of Directors meet with Members of Congress in DC
Last week, several members of the Board of Directors of Associated Industries of Missouri (AIM) met with the Missouri congressional delegation regarding federal issues important to Missouri businesses.
The AIM group included Chairman of the Board Raymond T. Wagner, Jr. of Enterprise Holdings, Inc., Second Vice Chairman John Valenti of Sanofi, Chairman of the Missouri Transportation and Development Council Rod Reid of Shepherd Hills Factory Outlets, Inc., James Carter of Emerson, John Frederick of Boeing, Shaun Garrison of Ameren, Gail Hinshaw of The Mountain Data Center, and Ray McCarty, president/CEO of AIM.
The annual trip provides Missouri business leaders a chance to interact with the Missouri delegation on federal issues affecting all Missouri businesses. This year, the agenda included environmental regulations, tax reform, labor issues, federal highway funding, Trade Promotion Authority and Ex-Im Bank reauthorization.
Meeting with the group in person were Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer, Congressman Billy Long, Congressman Sam Graves, Congresswoman Ann Wagner, Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler, Congressman Jason Smith, and Senator Roy Blunt.
Staff members representing Senator Claire McCaskill and Congressman Lacy Clay also met with the group.
“This trip is not a lobbying trip, but a chance for our group to express to Congress the importance of key business issues and to get feedback from our Missouri delegation regarding the status and their stance on those issues,” said Ray McCarty. “All those we met with treated our group with respect and we all found the trip to be very informative.”
The group meetings occurred prior to last Friday’s key vote on Trade Promotion Authority. While that part of the bill passed, another part of the same bill dealing with Trade Adjustment Assistance was not approved, thereby delaying passage of the bill.
Hearings regarding the impact of federal ozone regulations currently under consideration by the EPA were held in close proximity to the meeting. The group discussed the impact of the regulation that threatens to make nearly the entire state of Missouri a non-attainment area. This designation would stifle growth and hamper current business operations, especially manufacturing facilities, in all affected counties. The group relayed the story of one AIM member that is located in the St. Louis non-attainment area and how environmental regulations are forcing them to buy an extremely expensive incinerator or go out of business. That same business is turning away customers so they do not violate their allowable emissions – a real impact of such regulations on the economy. Congressman Billy Long serves on the subcommittee that is holding hearings regarding the impact of those regulations. You may click here for a video of the hearing and written testimony of some of the witnesses.
Some members of the group are in this picture taken in a U.S. House office building hallway. Left to right: Gail Hinshaw (The Mountain Data Center), Ray McCarty (AIM president), Rod Reid (Shepherd Hills Factory Outlets, Inc., John Valenti (Sanofi), Ray Wagner (Enterprise Holdings, Inc.).
Associated Industries of Missouri has served as the “Voice of Missouri Business”® since 1919.