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Advocacy Updates
Governmental Affairs Committee
City of Fort Worth
Tarrant County
Office of the Texas Governor
June 18, 2024
AEI Scholar Shares About the Future of Work with FWC Members

Last week, the Fort Worth Chamber hosted a “Policy Pulse” conversation on the future of work, collaborating with the American Enterprise Institute and scholar Brent Orrell. Specifically, the presentation zeroed in on how demography and technology are shaping the skills of the future. Orrell highlighted several demographic trends that are shaping the modern economy and […]

May 29, 2024
JOIN US: Policy Pulse Conversation on the Future of Work

The Fort Worth Chamber is partnering with the American Enterprise Institute scholar Brent Orrell on June 13 to facilitate a conversation surrounding education and workforce needs in a rapidly evolving economy. Orrell will explore the impacts of an aging workforce, technological change, demographic trends, and shifting skill requirements. Drawing insights from the collaborative research of […]

May 22, 2024
Fort Worth Scraps Street Maintenance Fee Proposal

In March, the City of Fort Worth proposed a street maintenance fee for residents and businesses during a City Council work session presentation. However, the City recently announced the proposed fee has been parked for now. The proposal would have levied a fee on all business operations, with the amount varying based on business type […]

May 17, 2024
Fort Worth Chamber Secures Initial Win for Businesses and Consumers vs. CFPB

The Fort Worth Chamber, U.S. Chamber, and other co-plaintiffs secured a win against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last week, as Judge Mark Pittman ruled to grant a preliminary injunction of the CFPB’s proposed credit card late fees rule. This means the rule will not go into effect and the status quo will be […]

May 8, 2024
FORT WORTH AND DALLAS REGIONAL CHAMBERS JOIN FORCES IN WASHINGTON D.C. TO CHAMPION REGIONAL GROWTH 

This week marked a significant stride for the Dallas-Fort Worth region's business landscape as the Fort Worth Chamber (FWC) and the Dallas Regional Chamber (DRC) co-hosted a trip to Washington D.C. The mission was clear: meet with the regional federal delegation, federal policy experts, and diplomats to advocate for pro-growth policies that will bolster the […]

April 12, 2024
FWC Panel Explores Vital Link Between Public Safety and Commerce

The Fort Worth Chamber recently hosted a panel of public safety leaders: Fort Worth Police Department Chief Neil Noakes, Fort Worth Fire Department Chief Jim Davis, and Tarrant County Commissioner Manny Ramirez. They gathered for a conversation about the importance of public safety in relation to business prosperity. The conversation was moderated by Leah King, […]

April 11, 2024
Artificial Intelligence Emerging as Top Issue Ahead of the 89th Legislative Session

Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Dade Phelan recently announced the creation of the House Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence & Emerging Technologies. According to a release from Speaker Phelan, the purpose of the committee is to “conduct a comprehensive review of the advancements in artificial intelligence and emerging technologies (AI/ET)”. Specifically of interest […]

March 21, 2024
New Independent Contractor Rule and its Impact on Business

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) final rule on determining whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor went into effect. The updated rule rescinds a 2021 version of the rule, and adopts a six factor “economic realities” test for making such a determination. Workers being classified as employees rather […]

March 13, 2024
New Street Maintenance Fee Proposed for Businesses in Fort Worth

In early March, during a Fort Worth City Council work session, City staff and consultants outlined a proposal to fund long-term street maintenance in Fort Worth. The proposed street maintenance fee would be a new fee for residents and businesses on their City of Fort Worth utilities bill, alongside other fees such as stormwater, trash pickup, etc.

March 8, 2024
FWC Takes Action Against Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Credit Card Late Fee Rule

A core function of the Fort Worth Chamber is to promote public policy that fosters a strong business climate, and to oppose policies that hinder the ability of businesses to grow and prosper. The recent credit card late fees rule proposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau compels us to act in support of small businesses and consumers in Fort Worth and beyond.

February 22, 2024
FWC Sets Dates for Washington D.C. Fly-In

The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce is preparing for its biannual Washington D.C. fly-in presented by Lockheed Martin with the Dallas Regional Chamber. The fly-in will be conducted from April 30 through May 2, with various community leaders from Fort Worth in attendance to advocate as the voice of business with policymakers in Washington.

February 12, 2024
FWC TO HOST "LEADERS IN GOVERNMENT" CONVERSATION ON PUBLIC SAFETY

The Fort Worth Chamber is hosting Fort Worth public safety leaders at its next "Leaders in Government" luncheon on April 9. Fort Worth Chief of Police Neil Noakes, Fort Worth Fire Chief Jim Davis, and Tarrant County Commissioner Manny Ramirez will participate in a panel conversation moderated by Leah King. They will discuss the importance […]

January 30, 2024
Last Call: Feb. 5 Voter Registration Deadline

Texas will host its primary elections on Tuesday, March 5. To vote in the primary, Texans must be registered to vote by February 5. Voter registration applications can be found on the Tarrant County Elections website. If you’re unsure of your current voter registration status, that can also be checked online here.

January 25, 2024
FORT WORTH CHAMBER UNVEILS LOCAL POLICY PRIORITIES

During its first full board meeting of 2024, the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce finalized its Local Policy Priorities, which outline where the organization stands on a variety of local public policy issues, including infrastructure and mobility, and education and workforce. The document not only charts the organization’s course in terms of its public policy advocacy for City, County, and other local-level discussions, but also conveys to its membership and the public where the organization stands on items that are important to the business community.

January 18, 2024
U.S. Chamber State of Business: Shifting the Narrative from Pessimism to Opportunity

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce kicked off 2024 with its annual State of American Business address, delivered by CEO Suzanne Clark. The address took the ambitious aim of combating negative narratives that permeate conversations around business and politics. Clark highlighted the success of the free enterprise system and the role of American businesses in enhancing […]

January 11, 2024
Effort Underway to Improve Fort Worth Air Quality

With grant money from the EPA, the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) has begun work on a regional Air Quality Improvement Plan (AQIP) for the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area.

January 5, 2024
Public Policy: What to Watch in 2024

In a presidential election year like 2024, the November general election is likely to dominate headlines throughout the year. However, several other important public policy issues are on the horizon in the new year, from local and state to federal items that might impact the Fort Worth business community. Here’s a rundown of some things to watch in 2024.

December 14, 2023
March Primary Ballots Finalized: What to Know

Policy Pulse December 14, 2023 The filing deadline for the March primary elections in Texas has come and gone, finalizing the field of candidates in various races up and down the ballot. Tarrant County positions such as County Commissioner and Sheriff all the way up to federal positions in the U.S. House of Representatives will […]

December 8, 2023
Fort Worth Emerges as a Top Destination for Foreign Business Investment: Insights into the City's Success Factors 

In an annual “Investing in America” ranking compiled by the Financial Times and Nikkei, Fort Worth has surged as one of the top cities in the United States for foreign business investment. The state of Texas, and North Texas in particular, solidified several of the top spots in the 91-city rankings. Houston ranked No. 1 […]

December 4, 2023
Fort Worth Soars: Unpacking the Latest Demographic Surge and Future Projections in North Texas

In October, an analysis by relocation technology company moveBuddha predicted that Texas would be home to the three largest metro areas in the United States: Dallas-Fort Worth leading the way with 33.9M residents, Houston coming in second with 31.4M, and Austin in third with 22.3M. These three metros, which along with San Antonio form the […]

November 16, 2023
Recap: Fort Worth Chamber Hosts Salute to Service Breakfast

On November 15, the Fort Worth Chamber hosted its inaugural “Salute to Service” breakfast to empower veterans in their entrepreneurial and business endeavors. Event attendees were treated to a group of speakers including State Senator Kelly Hancock, Councilmember Elizabeth Beck, Councilmember Charles Lauersdorf, Jeffrey King with Falcon Construction, Casey Lawrence with GallantFew, and Steven Gonzalez with Workforce Solutions of Tarrant County.

November 10, 2023
Mayor Parker Shares “Good Natured” Greenspace Initiative 

The Fort Worth Chamber’s investors council was joined by Mayor Mattie Parker on Tuesday for an update on the City of Fort Worth’s new greenspace initiative: Good Natured. Greenspace can be defined as any of the following features:  Mayor Parker argued Fort Worth needs additional greenspace to meet the demands of the city’s record growth, […]

November 2, 2023
How is Your Business Impacted by Homelessness?

An issue that has emerged more frequently in recent discussions revolves around homelessness and its potential ramifications for businesses in the Fort Worth area.

October 27, 2023
The Business Case FOR Texas Constitutional Amendments

Early voting began this week for the November 7 Constitutional Amendments election, featuring 14 ballot propositions. The Fort Worth Chamber provided an overview of all 14 earlier this year, which can be viewed here. With several of the propositions impacting business operations in some capacity, outlined below are the pro-business cases for some of the amendments that appear on the ballot.

October 12, 2023
Ban on Vaccine Mandates for Private Employers Proposed by Texas Legislature

The Texas Legislature reconvened on October 9 for its third special session of the year. Among the items listed on the call released by Governor Abbott is a “[prohibition of] COVID-19 vaccine mandates by private employers.” At the time of writing, there were two main proposals on the topic; one in the Senate and one in the House.

October 9, 2023
Mayor Parker Highlights Fort Worth's Progress and Priorities at State of the City Address

On October 6, Mayor Mattie Parker updated more than 1,000 local business leaders at the Fort Worth Chamber’s annual State of the City address. With one two-year term in the rearview mirror and embarking on her second term, Mayor Parker described that state of the City as strong, and provided several highlights illustrating the community’s […]

October 2, 2023
Trends in Texas and Tarrant County Amidst National Labor Challenges

The Wall Street Journal recently published an article illustrating America’s “long-term labor crisis” using a handful of different metrics. What does the statewide and local data say about the same trends in Texas and Tarrant County?

September 22, 2023
Fort Worth City Council Briefed on the State of Public Education

“How important do you think public education is to the health, safety, and welfare of our community?” In a presentation to the Fort Worth City Council on September 19, Pete Geren discussed this question with council members and shared data which painted the picture that Fort Worth area public school students are falling off the pace to remain at grade level in math and reading.

September 15, 2023
How the DOL's Proposed Overtime Rule Could Impact Fort Worth Business

On September 8, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced the publication of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), Defining and Delimiting the Exemptions for Executive, Administrative, Professional, Outside Sales, and Computer Employees. Referred to simply as the “overtime rule”, the proposal aims to increase the salary threshold under which employees would be required to receive […]

September 8, 2023
Rep. Roger Williams Addresses Key Small Business Concerns at Fort Worth Chamber Event

The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce hosted its latest Leaders in Government event, presented by Kelly Hart, on Thursday, September 7. U.S. Representative Roger Williams, chairman of the House Committee on Small Business, was the featured speaker. Chairman Williams visited with members of the Chamber’s Business Retention and Expansion Committee as well as the Government Affairs Committee prior to the luncheon, providing updates on issues facing the country’s small businesses.

August 31, 2023
Texas Constitutional Amendment Propositions, Part II

On November 7, Texans will go to the polls to vote on 14 proposed amendments to the state constitution. Below is a summary of the final seven propositions, in the order they will appear on the ballot. Direct links to each proposition are also included for further reading.

August 25, 2023
Texas Constitutional Amendment Propositions, Part I

On November 7, Texans will go to the polls to vote on 14 proposed amendments to the state constitution. Below is a summary of the first seven propositions, in the order they will appear on the ballot. Direct links to each proposition are also included for further reading.

August 18, 2023
State of the County Highlights Tarrant County’s Growth and Potential

The Fort Worth Chamber hosted its annual State of the County, presented by Capital One, on August 17, featuring Tarrant County Judge Tim O'Hare. Judge O’Hare recapped his tenure since coming into office at the beginning of 2023, and provided an overview of the county's current trajectory and future aspirations.

August 11, 2023
Highlights from the City of Fort Worth’s 2023-2024 Budget Proposal

At a Fort Worth City Council meeting on August 8, City Manager David Cooke unveiled a proposed budget for fiscal year 2023-2024. Several additional meetings are scheduled to take place on the budget throughout August and September before finalization, but several items stand out as being of potential interest to the business community. Overview The […]

July 27, 2023
Texas Budget Highlights 2024-2025

Texas legislators have one constitutional duty every other year when the Legislature is in session: pass a budget. This biennium’s budget process featured operating with a historic surplus of more than $30 billion, generating robust debate on how to best spend those resources. The final version eclipsed 1,000 pages, so here are some highlights of what is included in the 2024-2025 budget.

July 21, 2023
Film Incentives Bring Jobs and Investment to Fort Worth

The Fort Worth business community secured several public policy wins during the regular session of the 88th Legislature, such as the Texas Jobs, Energy, Technology, and Innovation Act (HB 5), key infrastructure funding, property tax relief, and a boost to Texas community colleges to more adequately prepare the state’s workforce. To inform the business community of other legislative wins, the Chamber will be highlighting a variety of bills that became law this past session. Next up on the list: enhanced film incentives.

July 14, 2023
Texas Legislature Sends Property Tax Relief to Governor

The Texas Legislature has reached a long-awaited solution to deliver $18 billion of tax relief to Texans. After several rounds of negotiations from the regular session and two different special sessions, the Texas House and Senate have agreed on a tax relief package that now sits on Governor Abbott’s desk for approval. The Governor has […]

July 6, 2023
State of Play: Property Tax Relief in Texas

At the conclusion of the 88th regular session of the Texas Legislature, missing from a list of other pro-business policy wins was a resolution on property tax relief. With a record budget surplus, state leaders all agreed that delivering meaningful relief to taxpayers was a top priority. However, agreeing on the delivery mechanism for that relief proved to be more complicated.

June 23, 2023
Texas Legislature Supports Business Through Investment in Core Infrastructure

The Fort Worth business community secured several public policy wins during the regular session of the 88th Legislature, such as the Texas Jobs, Energy, Technology, and Innovation Act (HB 5) and a boost to Texas community colleges to more adequately prepare the state’s workforce. To inform the business community of other legislative wins, the Chamber will be highlighting a variety of bills that became law this past session. Next up is a review of the variety of infrastructure bills that have been signed into law.

June 16, 2023
Texas Bolsters Workforce Development through Community Colleges 

The Fort Worth business community secured several public policy wins during the regular session of the 88th Legislature, such as the Texas Jobs, Energy, Technology, and Innovation Act (HB 5) which was signed into law by Governor Abbott on June 8. To inform the business community of other legislative wins, the Chamber will be highlighting a variety of bills that became law this past session. Next up is House Bill 8, which will enhance opportunity at Texas community colleges.

June 9, 2023
TEXAS LEGISLATURE ADVANCES PRO-BUSINESS PRIORITIES IN REGULAR SESSION

The regular session of the 88th Texas Legislature concluded, and the first special session began immediately afterwards. Amidst the attention on the special session(s), several pro-business bills were passed during the regular session, including an economic development incentive bill, a junior college finance program, and infrastructure-related funding.

May 30, 2023
Passage of HB 5 Offers a Continued “Texas Miracle”

The passage of House Bill 5, also known as the Texas Jobs, Energy, Technology, and Innovation Act, with widespread bipartisan support, aims to create new high-paying jobs, encourage economic development, attract business investment, and promote energy and water infrastructure development in Texas. The bill provides incentives such as property tax abatements and job creation requirements, and it is expected to keep Texas competitive and maintain its economic prosperity, known as the "Texas Miracle," by attracting businesses and ensuring continued investment and job growth.

May 19, 2023
Updates from the Texas Legislature, Transportation Plan Open House

The end of the Texas legislative session is rapidly approaching May 29. Several important bills that will impact Texas’ economic prosperity are moving through the legislative process ahead of key deadlines. HB 5 – the Fort Worth Chamber’s top priority – passed the Texas House and was heard by the Senate Business & Commerce Committee […]

May 12, 2023
Economic Development Incentives Bill Heads to the Texas Senate

One of the Fort Worth Chamber’s top legislative priorities this session cleared an important hurdle last week. On Thursday, May 4, HB 5 passed with widespread bipartisan support by a vote of 120-24. The bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Business & Commerce.

May 5, 2023
Survey Finds Texas Voters Strongly Support New Economic Development Incentives

Texas voters demonstrate strong support for a new, transparent, and accountable economic development incentive program, according to a recent Greater Houston Partnership-Morning Consult survey.

April 28, 2023
House Bill 5 Takes a Step Forward

Last week, the Fort Worth Chamber joined other advocates for job creation and economic growth by sending out a call to action on HB 5, the Texas Jobs and Security Act.

April 20, 2023
ACTION ALERT: Support Economic Development in Texas

House Bill 5, the Texas Jobs and Security Act, was recently heard in the Texas House Ways & Means Committee, where it now awaits a vote. HB 5 would create a new economic development program for Texas creating jobs and attracting new investment to our community. The vast majority of Texas voters – 84%, in […]

April 13, 2023
Priority Workforce and Education Bill Passes the Texas House

Priority Workforce and Education Bill Passes the Texas House.

April 7, 2023
Senator Ted Cruz Visits Fort Worth Chamber Members

On Wednesday, April 5, members of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce were joined by Senator Ted Cruz for a discussion about policy issues facing Fort Worth area businesses

March 31, 2023
Comparing the Property Tax Relief Plans in the House and Senate

Governor Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Patrick, and Speaker Dade Phelan have all publicly called for the state’s record budget surplus to be used in large part toward property tax relief for Texans.

March 24, 2023
Tarrant County Leaders take the Voice of Business to Texas Capitol

With activity in the Texas Legislature picking up steam, the spotlight on our state’s elected officials brightens.

March 16, 2023
Governor Abbott Outlines Blueprint for Texas to Remain #1

The Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce hosted Governor Greg Abbott at its “Leaders in Government” event on March 15 at The Worthington Renaissance Hotel.

March 9, 2023
Momentum Builds for Economic Development Incentives in Texas

Following the expiration of Chapter 313 – that state of Texas’ primary property tax abatement tool – at the end of 2022, stakeholders have been seeking an alternative that would keep Texas competitive with other states for capital intensive economic development projects.

March 3, 2023
Texas' "Big Three" Outline Priorities for the 88th Legislature

Last week, Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Dade Phelan unveiled a slate of priorities that he hopes will be addressed this session by the chamber over which he presides.

February 24, 2023
Meet the Candidates: Fort Worth City Council

The filing deadline has passed for candidates wishing to seek local office in 2023, finalizing the field of candidates who will appear on the ballot this spring. Two new Fort Worth City Council districts have been created to expand the elected representation of the city’s residents. Get to know the districts and the candidates below.

February 16, 2023
FTC's Non-Compete Proposal Sets Dangerous Precedent for Business

Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) proposed a rule that would ban non-compete clauses between employers and workers.

February 9, 2023
Tarrant County House Delegation Receive Committee Assignments

Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Dade Phelan announced the committee assignments for the 88th Legislature today. Members hailing from Tarrant County were placed on various committees spanning several different policy areas.

February 2, 2023
Get to Know the Tarrant County Texas House Delegation

The Texas Legislature is underway for its 88th regular session. The public policy issues that elected officials will deliberate have an impact on local business in Fort Worth, whether it be tax policy, business regulations, quality of life issues, or a variety of other policy areas that effect businesses’ bottom line.

January 26, 2023
Tarrant County Senate Delegation Receive Committee Assignments

Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick announced the Texas Senate’s committee assignments this week, establishing the leadership of 17 different committees, special committees, and subcommittees with specific legislative purviews.

January 19, 2023
Get to Know the Tarrant County Senate Delegation

The Texas Legislature officially convened last week, setting in motion the 140-day period every other year when elected officials address key issues and priorities of the state government.

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