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MJ Wire CEO Shares Insight About American Industry, New VoterVoice Political Outreach Platform

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In a recent meeting of the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce, Mount Joy Wire PResident & CEO Tom Duff shared his thoughts about the Chamber’s new implementation of the VoterVoice citizen outreach platform and how it has helped bridge the gap between businesses and the government that serves them. Duff was the first of any local business to utilize the platform, and overall has been impressed with his results so far.

The following is a transcript of their discussion, which includes insight from PA State Senator Lloyd Smucker:

Heather (Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce): The countdown continues with number 3 under Community Impact, Voter Voice!

Our voices, they are powerful and can motivate change when heard collectively. Now, The Chamber is making it easier for those individual voices to make a statement, too, through VoterVoice. VoterVoice is an online program that’s designed to make your communication with elected officials immediate and direct, as well as make your involvement in advocacy issues more streamlined and efficient. As issues arise, we will send out an alert and direct you to our action center where the system will connect you to issues, information, match you to your elected officials and then guide you through a message sending process. For those of you who subscribe to our quarterly electronic advocacy report – you were engaging with VoterVoice last month.

Sure, you may be thinking how can my individual voice make an impact or be valued by our legislators. I’d like to introduce you to a business leader who’s using VoterVoice to enact change and shed light on real business issues at the federal level, Tom.

Tom (CEO, Mount Joy Wire): Thanks, Heather. As the CEO and part owner of Mount Joy Wire, I am always looking for strategic ways to grow our business and create jobs. The largest obstacle for the past 18 months has been the uncertainty, from Washington, on many topics which will directly affect my costs, profit margin and ability to expand.

As I started to write the strategic plan for 2013 to present to our bankers, owners and employees, many ideas were documented that should allow us to grow into additional product lines or markets. Yet in the end, the Board of Directors and I put all expansion of plant or people, on hold. We just do not know the rules we may need to comply with, or the related costs.

I felt it was necessary to reach out to our federal legislators to express my concerns and challenges regarding uncertainty among business owners. Without a clear direction from our government, it delays expansion and job growth, ultimately, making us lose jobs to overseas markets and destroying our chances for any real economic upturn.

I was so glad The Chamber implemented VoterVoice. It gave me direct access to those legislators I wanted to connect with – saving me time and energy trying to locate their contact information myself. Remember, as business leaders it’s our responsibility to take action if we are to see change in the legislature. I encourage you to all check out VoterVoice and begin forming a relationship with our delegation. And, what better way to start, then right now with Senator Lloyd Smucker.

Lloyd (PA State Senator): Thanks, Tom. All of you in this room not only represent the business sector, but the broader community, too. You have a desire to live, work and do business in a place that’s economically vibrant; a place that can attract key talent and the resources you need to grow and expand locally. And, you have a right to expect that government should do what it can to support the private sector’s success in growing jobs and the economy. It’s only through your input and feedback that we, as legislators, are able to ensure that we’re advocating in your best interest. Your voice does matter and helps to shape the future direction of our local communities, the Commonwealth and the nation. I encourage all of you to commit to getting more involved in the issues that matter to you.

Heather:  Thank you, Tom and Senator Smucker. Just think if all of us in this room took time to start a dialogue with our elected officials what forward movement and progress could be made at all levels of government. To start getting connected, VoterVoice, can be accessed through The Chamber’s website at lancasterchamber.com then “Advocacy.”

For more information, see the original press release: