Elrich Needs To Correct Record About Dealings with Chambers of Commerce
This letter was submitted by the leaders of the Montgomery County, Greater Bethesda and Greater Silver Spring chambers of commerce
This letter was submitted by Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Georgette “Gigi” Godwin, Greater Bethesda Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Ginanne Italiano, and Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Jane Redicker
To the editor:
Addressing a question about Montgomery County’s business climate in a Q&A published May 3 on Bethesda Beat, county executive candidate Marc Elrich said, "I’ve had a conversation for years with the chambers of commerce, saying, ‘Set up a meeting with me. Let’s talk about what are the regulations you think are impediments.’ The number of times they’ve come into my office? Zero. One of the things I would convene—since as county executive I’m sure they would then come to the table—is [an examination] of what things we require that maybe we don’t need to do."
We were surprised to read the assertion by Marc Elrich that representatives of the chambers of commerce have never come into his office to discuss regulations. On behalf of our members who are owner-operators and employers of tens of thousands of residents of Montgomery County, please correct the record. We work hard on their behalf every day to create opportunities and remove barriers so that they can grow and succeed, thereby contributing to the local economy and community.
As part of that ongoing work, we and others have met frequently with County Council member Marc Elrich and his colleagues on a number of issues. Mr. Elrich has been a featured speaker at meetings held by all of our chambers and we and our colleagues have personally met with him in his office on numerous occasions over the 12 years he has been in office. In fact, in August 2017 we provided the very information he says he never received.
It is disappointing to see a current elected official disparage his constituents by insinuating that we have not worked in good faith with him over the years. Rather than blame the chambers for not providing him with the information he would like, we expect elected officials to listen to concerns that are of utmost importance to this group of constituents and to the future of Montgomery County.
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