June 7, 2018

Midlands Businesses Endorse Richland County Candidates

The Greater Columbia Chamber, Building Industry of Central South Carolina, South Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association, and Central Carolina REALTORS® Association have collectively chosen to endorse candidates in the upcoming June 12 primary election.

“As the leading advocate for the foodservice and lodging industry, economic growth and job creation are vital to our members,” said John Durst, President and CEO, South Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association. “In interviews, we were impressed with Stan, Will, Joe, and Chakisse’s vision for economic growth and the changes they envisioned to make that a reality,” continued Durst.

Central Carolina REALTORS® Association CEO Taylor Oxendine stated, “The cost of doing business has a direct correlation to where people choose to buy a home. You can see that clearly by looking at the explosion of homes bought and sold in Greenville and Charleston coupled with the significant number of businesses operating in those areas. Columbia is not keeping pace with that level of growth in home ownership in our state. It’s time for change if we want our area to thrive,” continued Oxendine.

“The Columbia Chamber and our Partners understand the tremendous responsibility and cooperation required to make our region healthy and prosperous for the citizens and for the businesses who choose to make this area home,” stated Carl Blackstone, President and CEO of the Greater Columbia Chamber. “Public trust in our elected officials is at an all-time low. By endorsing Joe, Will, Stan, Chakisse, and Byron, the Chamber delivers on one of the strategic priorities for our Forward, Together initiative which is to elect and engage proactive and responsive leaders with a focus on accountability and transparency,” concluded Blackstone.

Executive Director Earl McLeod of the Building Industry Association of Central South Carolina remarked, “If ever there has been a time in the history of local elections that voters must get engaged, it is now. We desperately need council members with a strong knowledge of the business community — Chakisse, Stan, Joe, Will, and Byron each expressed a desire to be respectful of other’s opinions and to cooperate with each other so as not to create an adversarial environment,” said McLeod. “Our community is at a crossroads and we’re grateful for the people who have stepped up to the plate at this crucial time.”

About Columbia Chamber
The Columbia Chamber is a private, non-profit, Partner-driven organization comprised of 1,100 business enterprises, civic organizations, educational institutions, and individuals in Calhoun, Fairfield, Kershaw, Lexington, Newberry, and Richland counties. The Columbia Chamber serves as the voice of its Partners and the business community at large on matters of economic, educational, social, cultural and political concern, as well as supports and promotes the success of its partners through networking, professional development, advocacy, and leadership. The organization has represented the interests of the local business community since 1902.

About Building Industry Association of Central South Carolina

The Building Industry Association of Central South Carolina (BIA), formerly the Home Builders Association of Greater Columbia, is a non-profit, professional trade association founded in 1957 for the purpose of maintaining high professional standards in the residential construction industry.  Based in Columbia, SC, it is comprised of over 800 builder and associate firms representing over 7,500 industry professionals involved in home building, remodeling, multifamily construction, property management, subcontracting, design, housing finance, building product manufacturing, and other aspects of residential and light commercial construction.

About South Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association

The voice of the foodservice and lodging industry, the South Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association’s mission is to promote, protect and educate those industries and to ensure positive business growth for members. A statewide, non-partisan trade organization, the SCRLA strives to represent the best interest of its members on small business issues, hospitality and tourism concerns, while promoting South Carolina’s quality of life.

About Central Carolina REALTORS® Association

Central Carolina REALTORS® Association has provided professional real estate services for over 100 years. Chartered July 28, 1913, the association serves its membership of over 2,300 by providing programs and services to enhance REALTORS® and their ability to conduct business with integrity and competence. CCRA advocates for the reduction of undue regulatory restraint, and fervently supports the preservation of home ownership and private property rights.

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