The Value Of Membership: Information And New Ideas

In this age of information, it’s not surprising that we often feel inundated. So much information comes to us in so many ways that it really is hard to keep up with all of it.

But how do you separate the truly valuable information for your business from the “good to know, but does it really help me” stuff? One key way is to consider the source. When you gain information from the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, you can be certain that it is important for business people.

The Chamber provides a monthly online newsletter, packed with information about chamber services, items from our six Community Chambers of Commerce, and Chamber Member news. In addition, we write and distribute the Chautauqua Business Weekly email to all chamber members – providing a quick reference point for key items and coming events and always with direct links to additional Web-based information.

The Business Over Bagels series of workshops each year provides trainings for chamber members seeking to improve specific skills. The trainings are designed for businesses of all size, often focusing on human resource issues, marketing and more.

Guest speakers invited to the chamber’s main events always offer interesting and worthwhile information. Most recently, the chamber hosted a vice president from the Business Council of New York state to discuss state budget issues related to business tax and regulatory items.

We have also featured speakers recently on issues as varied as compiling a business plan for hydraulic fracturing and what it was like to win an Olympic gold medal. These presenters offer all types of insights for business people, including some that may provide pure motivation.

In an effort to utilize current technology to its fullest potential, all of the chamber’s weekly articles online can be part of an RSS subscription to help you as a businessperson keep on top of trends. Our information is also posted to Facebook and Twitter, for the convenience of our members. Now, thanks to an integrated web-based database, each time the chamber gets a new member, it will be automatically posted to our Facebook timeline.

Whether your business is seeking training for staff, information on advocacy issues, or just wants to stay in the know on how and when to network with other like-minded business people, your Chamber of Commerce is here to keep you connected. For more information, visit our website at



Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce provides opportunities for its members to have a direct conversation with elected officials from each level of government. This year, the State Legislative Breakfast will be held April 19 at the Lakewood Rod & Gun Club. State Sen. Cathy Young and Assemblyman Andrew Goodell will provide their insights about legislation in Albany, and be available for questions from the audience.

The state Legislative Breakfast is sponsored by Affinity One Federal Credit Union, DFT Communications, Jamestown Community College, Jamestown Mattress Company, KeyBank, Lake Erie Regional Health System of New York, Nestle Purina PetCare, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, Serta Mattress Company, the State University of New York at Fredonia, WCA Hospital, and WJTN/WWSE/WKSN/WHUG/WQFX.

The state Legislative Breakfast is just $15 per person. You can register online through the Chamber’s website and online events calendar, or call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101.



The Hanover Community Chamber of Commerce will honor three local businesses during its awards luncheon and annual meeting on Thursday. The event will be held at the Colony Restaurant and Lounge, 876 Main Road, Irving, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Award winners this year are: Business of the Year, Newbrook/Excelco; Community Service Award, Lake Erie Regional Health System of NY; and Continued Years of Service Award, Benchley Contracting & Rental.

The cost to attend is $15 per person. For more information, or to register, contact Hanover Community Chamber Coordinator Kevin Lowther at 366-6200, ext. 304.


The Westfield-Barcelona Community Chamber of Commerce will host a Business After Hours networking event on Thursday at the Grape Discovery Center, 8305 W. Main Road, Westfield. For more information, contact John Rawlinson, Westfield-Barcelona Chamber Coordinator, at 326-4000.


By this point in the year, some of us have slipped a little in that resolution to get into better shape. It sounded good back on Jan. 1, but it is often hard to keep those resolutions past the first month. For those enrolled in the Univera health insurance products through the Chamber of Commerce Bright Choices exchange, there may is an extra incentive to keep going – cash back. ActiveUnivera is a rewards program that makes it easy to receive cash back for simple healthy lifestyle decisions.

Those interested can earn up to $1,000 per family, or $500 for an individual, each year just for doing healthy things that fit into a daily routine; things like working in the yard, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or walking the dog. To learn more, visit and click the link for ActiveRewards. It’s easy to get started and you can get cash back just for working to meet your fitness goals this year.