Legislative Priorities

Legislative Positions 2021

Transportation
Transportation is crucial to Idaho’s economy and further delays will not only strangle Idaho’s economic vitality but will result in passing the problems to future generations. Accordingly, the Meridian Chamber of Commerce supports the following projects and funding mechanisms for transportation infrastructure:

• Construction of Linder overpass at I-84 to provide additional arterial north/south access
• Continue improvements to Highway 20/26 west of Locust Grove to reduce congestion, improve safety, and create economic opportunity for development
• Completion of State Highway 16 Extension to Highway 84/Central Valley Expressway
• Using a multi-faceted approach to create alternative funding sources including registration fees, fuels taxes, local option taxes and other user fees
• Support the continuation of investigating other means to fund alternate transportation without negatively impacting the General Fund

Economic Development
The Meridian Chamber favors legislation that creates jobs, reduces regulation on businesses, encourages businesses to grow and prosper, and makes it easier for businesses to provide goods and services for our citizens and trade.
• Support the exploration of local based incentives
• Support local option tax authority and mechanisms for funding infrastructure associated with new growth including impact fees
• Support legislation that improves access to liquor licenses for restaurants while working to maintain the value of legacy liquor licenses
• Support the Tax Reimbursement Incentive and its efforts to stimulate economic development

Taxes
The Meridian Chamber supports a tax structure which is fair, stable, provides adequately for those services the government must provide, and encourages investment by businesses and individuals in the growth of our economy.

• Support the review and potential elimination of sales tax exemptions
• Support reduction of state corporate income tax rates to increase competitiveness with other states

Education
The Meridian Chamber supports efforts to expand the capabilities of our K-12 schools to graduate all students with the necessary skills to successfully complete college and/or career/technical education (CTE), including emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). State supported colleges and universities need to provide the relevant curriculum and the trained workforce required if Idaho businesses are to effectively compete in the global marketplace.

• Support a mechanism for Idaho schools by which new growth contributes to the building needs associated with student enrollment
• Support expansion of College of Western Idaho’s and on-line campuses
• Support the reduction of the “super majority” requirement to a 60% approval rate for the passage of local bond issues

Local Government
The Meridian Chamber supports measures that enhance the amenities of our community to make Meridian a great place to live, work, and raise families.

• Protect the ability of communities to utilize Urban Renewal and Auditorium Districts
• Ensure that cities and counties have the necessary revenue to provide essential services
• Support efforts to require Council districting for municipalities with populations over 100,000
• Support efforts to allow cities to implement advisory ballot votes as a method of collecting citizen input