Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce Statement on Utah Legislature Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force’s Utah County Town Hall

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce released the following statement from its President and CEO, Rona Rahlf, regarding the recent Utah Legislature Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force’s Utah County Town Hall:

“Utah’s prosperity isn’t an accident, it is the result of great people, hard work, and a thriving business community, with Utah Valley leading the way, said Rahlf. Tax policy affects business costs, that is why Utah Valley business leaders from industries as varied as the tech sector, to direct sales, from legal and financial services to the medical profession attended tonight’s town hall and made their voices heard. I know that the legislature will take the concerns of business seriously as they consider possible tax reform legislation.”

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce is a community of members that supports and advocates for its member businesses and promotes a healthy and robust business environment in Utah County.

If you would like more information about this topic, please call Andy Pierucci at 385-266-9331 or email andy@thechamber.org

Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce Statement on Passage of the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act

Provo, UT – July 7, 2019- The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce released the following statement from its President and CEO, Rona Rahlf, in response to the recent vote on the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, which passed in the U.S. House of Representatives with a strong, bipartisan majority:

“Utah Valley’s businesses will benefit from this much needed reform to the H-1B visas system. We need more high skilled workers to continue the unprecedented economic growth we have seen the last few years, said Rahlf. Now we need the Senate to swiftly pass this commonsense piece of legislation so our businesses can continue to thrive.”

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce is a community of members that supports and advocates for its member businesses and promotes a healthy and robust business environment in Utah County.

If you would like more information about this topic, please call Andy Pierucci at 385-266-9331 or email andy@thechamber.org

Utah Valley Chamber Joins U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Other Business Organizations in Urging Congress to Pass USMCA

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Provo, UT – July 2, 2019- The Utah Valley Chamber joined the U.S. Chamber and hundreds of other business organizations across the country in signing a letter urging Congress to swiftly pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

“Utah County’s economic growth is driven by a number of different factors, including international trade. USMCA is critical to our economic future because it will preserve and strengthen U.S. trade ties to Canada and Mexico,” said President and CEO Rona Rahlf.

International trade is one of the most important factors driving Utah’s economic success. According to World Trade Center Utah, some 3,500 Utah companies directly engage in exporting. Thousands of businesses also use imported products. Some 95,000 Utah jobs are supported by international business. Utah county accounts for almost 15% of the state’s exports, nearly $2.16 billion in goods.

“As we have experienced in the past, a strong trade relationship with our closest neighbors yields favorable results for Utah companies,” said Miles Hansen, president and CEO of WTC Utah. “By solidifying USMCA, we remove many of the uncertainties faced during the negotiations and allow all parties to prosper within the stability of a long-term agreement.”

Trade with Canada and Mexico reached nearly $1.3 trillion in 2017, and the two countries bought more than one-third of all U.S. merchandise exports. In 2017, Utah exported nearly $1.9 billion in goods to Canada and Mexico. And in 2018, those numbers, while still being finalized, appear to have increased to over $2.3 billion.

 “Free trade is critical to Utah’s future and to the nation’s economy,” said Jeremy Hafen, Chairman of the Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors. “This agreement will preserve and strengthen the benefits of North American trade and is essential for Utah Valley’s business community.”

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce is a community of members that supports and advocates for its member businesses and promotes a healthy and robust business environment in Utah County.

If you would like more information about this topic, please call Rahlf at 801-851-2562 or email rona@thechamber.org

Utah Valley Chamber Names Andy Pierucci New Director of Public Policy and Business Development

The Utah Valley Chamber is pleased to announce the hire of Andy Pierucci as the new director of public policy and business development.

Andy Headshot“Andy is an outstanding addition to the team and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Utah Valley Chamber.  We are more than excited to have him part of the Chamber,” said President and CEO Rona Rahlf.

Pierucci has spent the past four years working for the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food in several different policy and market enhancement roles. He was the Director of the Marketing, Communications, and Economic Development Division where his team oversaw all department communications, the Utah’s Own program, and the international trade program.

Additionally, Pierucci has extensive experience in political campaigns and the policy process. He was Congressman Bishop’s campaign manager for three years and has worked on campaigns at every level of government. He currently serves on the Utah District Export Council, is a member of the Young Professionals Board for the American Cancer Association and was recently appointed to the Utah Advisory Committee for the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.

Pierucci got his undergraduate degree from Utah State University in Political Science and a minor in International Studies. He also has a certificate in Business, International Relations and the Political Economy from the London School of Economics, and recently finished a Master’s in Public Administration at the University of Utah with an emphasis in International Management.

“Utah County is an economic powerhouse,” says Pierucci.   “I can’t wait to work with business leaders across the county and around the state on issues that impact us all.”

As the director of public policy and business development, Pierucci will implement strategic initiatives for county-wide public policy advocacy and marketing and sales strategies to support member retention and acquisition. Pierucci starts June 17, 2019.

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce is a community of members that supports and advocates for its member businesses and promotes a healthy and robust business environment in Utah County.

Seeking Biz Dev Rock Star

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

The Business Development Executive is the first impression in the business community for the Utah Valley Chamber. The ideal candidate for this job is self-confident, self-motivated and understands the importance of cultivating relationships. Our Business Development Executives have a natural ability to meet new people and a knack for influencing others. Candidates must have a successful track record in sales; additionally, candidates must show experience in generating new business and success in hitting sales goals.

Compensation:  Base plus commission of new and renewed memberships and sponsorships

Responsibilities Include

  • Sell membership packages to businesses in Utah County
  • Develop and maintain an active prospect database & lead pipeline; maintain accurate and timely data in CRM
  • Achieve and surpass set monthly sales and retention goals
  • Develop strategies and plans to achieve goals
  • Increase overall sales as well as value per sale
  • Sell targeted sales projects including event sponsorships
  • Attend, assist and represent UVCC at networking functions, receptions, business expos and trade shows
  • Requirements
    • Five years of selling business-to-business services; a proven track record of generating increasing revenue in a sales role; ability to work well under pressure and meet deadlines; etc.
    • Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written, and the ability to cold call potential clients with confidence
    • Skilled at negotiating and closing deals with prospective members
    • Excellent organizational skills are essential as well as performance monitoring will be requirements
    • Previous sales experience in a membership organization preferred
    • Proficiency with Gmail, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
    • Basic CRM database experience

Benefit Package includes group health, dental, PTO, 401(k) and other.  To apply, submit resume, and cover letter to Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce via info@thechamber.org.  (Subject line should read “Sales”) or by mail to 111 S. University Avenue, Provo, UT 84601.

The Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce is a community of Members that supports and advocates for its Member businesses and promotes a healthy and robust business environment in Utah County.

The Utah Valley Chamber has members representing local, regional and national businesses. From startup to proprietors to large corporations, Member businesses represent industries such as financial services, energy, technology, insurance, manufacturing, dining, shopping, wholesale and retail trade, fashion, hospitality, health care, real estate and communications.

Vineyard’s concrete jungle: How a Utah developer is turning concrete and slag into roads, schools and parks

VINEYARD, Utah (Dec. 3, 2018) – One of Utah’s busiest concrete recyclers is a Geneva project—but not the one you’d expect.

Land developer Anderson Geneva has pulled out nearly 200,000 cubic yards of concrete from the site of the former Geneva Steel plant, which it purchased in 2005. That amount is enough to fill about 60 Olympic-sized swimming pools and provide plenty of clean space with homes, shops, restaurants and offices on the 1,700-acre @geneva master-planned community in Vineyard.

While it proved challenging to dig up and crush tons of old concrete, it was even more challenging to figure out how to dispose of it, said Stewart Park, project manager for @geneva.

“After a lot of research and an exhaustive bidding process, we were able to process much of the crushed concrete for re-use,” said Park. “Some of the uses of the material include road base, back fill and engineered fill for major buildings and other construction projects in Utah Valley, including those by BYU, the LDS church, UTA, Lehi High School and Mountain View High School. Our favorite project in which our processed concrete was recycled is Orem City’s All Together playground, which focuses on benefiting children with disabilities.”

Anderson Geneva and its concrete-crushing arm will continue to recycle old concrete for the next three years or so—about the amount of time it will take to dig up the remaining 550,000 cubic yards found mainly in the industrial-zoned northwest quadrant of the live/work/play development.

Concrete is not the only material for which Anderson Geneva has been able to find a second home. The developer has also recycled many of the remnants of the former steel mill, including over 4 million tons of steel-making byproduct slag that was processed and used for much of the base for the I-15 CORE project. Geneva slag was also used for road base and embankments for the 800 North extension, dubbed the Vineyard Connector, which will connect residents from Northern Utah County to Vineyard. Slag continues to be mined and processed from the site, with thousands of cubic yards being moved and used for various road and infrastructure projects along the Wasatch Front.

About @geneva

@geneva, a project of Anderson Development, is a 1,700-acre master-planned mixed-use community in Vineyard, Utah. Learn more about one of the country’s premier live/work/play developments at genevautah.com.

Valley United food drive launches Nov. 5, joining students from UVU and BYU

After 2017’s successful fundraising and food-donating drive, wolverines and cougars are competing to raise even more this year. Brigham Young and Utah Valley universities have kicked off the annual Valley United drive. It runs Nov. 5-30.

DSC_0692.jpg“We’re excited to see the generosity of students and the community through the Valley United drive this year,” said Dave Smith, food bank manager for Community Action Services and Food Bank in Provo. “Last year the schools raised $40,543 and donated 266,292 pounds of food, which helped keep our shelves stocked through the winter.”

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Since 2012, the two schools have worked together—and competed—to raise money and gather food donations for Utah County families in need. At the kick-off event on Oct. 26, Cosmo the

Cougar, Willy the Wolverine, and students from both schools gathered at Community Action Services and Food Bank in Provo. Cosmo and Willy also met families who use the food pantry. Then they walked through with them as they selected their food for the week.

During 2017, an average of 900 families used the Provo food pantry at Community Action Services each month. People who use the pantry live in Utah County and are part of the 13.3 percent of residents who are unsure of where they’ll get their next meal. All of the money raised and food donated during the drive will stay in Utah County to help these local families in need.

During the drive, students and community members can do

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nate online through a securewebsite. At BYU, they also can give money at the Creameries, the BYU Bookstore, and the Cougareat. UVU plans to have money donation locations

as well. Both schools will have barrels and bins set up around campus for non-perishable food donations. Go here to see the list of most-needed items.

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“We’re grateful for the generosity of students and

the community,” Smith said.

All the food donated during the drive will stock the food pantry in Provo. With the money, Community Action Services and Food Bank will use its leveraging power, so monetary donations go farther. For each dollar donated, it can buy three meals or 15 pounds of food.

Since 1967, Community Action Services and Food Bank has been helping local families pull themselves out of poverty with programs and services. For more information, go to communityactionuc.org.

 

Provo Mayor Signs Property Title Transfer Clearing Path to Proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine

Developer obtains property title; design and construction on new East Bay Golf holes to begin

PROVO, Utah, Oct. 9, 2018 – Following an extensive and productive process working with the Provo Mayor’s office, Provo Municipal Council and other involved parties to approve and obtain the location for the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine (NCOM), Provo Mayor Michelle Kaufusi signed a title transfer to the developer for Wasatch Educational to acquire the property. here.>

The proposed medical school site location is on approximately 21 acres of the northwestern portion of the East Bay Golf Course, which was approved as surplus property by the Provo Municipal Council in January. An additional 7.8-acre contiguous parcel was purchased by the developer from a private source to expand the site location.

Under the agreement, the developers of the proposed medical education campus, which will include the proposed NCOM campus as well as the relocated Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions campus, will fund relocation costs of three current golf holes to the southeastern portion of the course. These new holes will be designed, relocated and playable before construction on the proposed medical education campus begins possibly by the end of 2018.

“This is an exciting time for Provo,” said Dr. John J. Dougherty, founding Dean and Chief Academic Officer of NCOM. “We are grateful for the work of Mayor Kaufusi, the Provo Municipal Council and City Administration to make this all come together for the benefit of the people of Provo and Utah. This planned medical education campus will give the students the opportunity to pursue whatever specialty they choose in medicine helping to address the growing medical shortages throughout the state.”

“Provo is a college town through and through,” said Kaufusi. “Education is at the heart of what we’re all about here. So, I’m very excited about the addition of a proposed medical school here in Provo.”

One of the critical goals of the proposed medical school is to recruit, train, and retain students in Utah. “Our plan is to have no less than 50 percent of our enrolled students from or with ties to Utah,” said Dougherty.

Along with other medical schools in Utah, the proposed NCOM would supply doctors to help offset a growing physician shortage. Research from the Utah Medical Association Council estimates that Utah will need approximately 375 new physicians each year to meet increasing access to healthcare needs. In 2015, the American Medical Association ranked Utah 49th in primary care physicians to population ratio and 43rd in overall physicians to population ratios.

Named after the Ray and Tye Noorda Foundation, who funded a significant portion of the money for the project, the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine is positioned to be a premier, world-class medical education and research institution. The proposed curriculum will be a new hybrid based on some of the most innovative and progressive medical education programs in North America designed to prepare physicians to provide high-quality healthcare with a focus on wellness.

The Noorda financial commitment, along with a significant funding commitment from the developer, provides the majority of the funds needed for construction and operation of the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine.

“The proposed NCOM will not cost the taxpayers a penny and may make a large economic impact to the county each year,” said Dougherty.

According to a recent independent economic impact study by Bonneville Research, the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine could potentially provide more than $62 million in the construction business, 236 construction-related jobs and bring more than 121 institution-related employment positions to the county. It may attract other health, medical, biomedical, biotechnology, retail, and related spin-off businesses.

In a later phase, a new Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions campus will be built adjacent to the proposed medical institution. At full operation, the local economic impact of the combined schools could be approximately $100 million annually and could include 1,500 jobs with more than $83 million in the construction business. All of this may increase the property tax base including an estimated $8 million directed to the Provo School District in the first 15 years.

The development plans include significant green space in and around the proposed medical education campus, creating a park-like atmosphere to protect and preserve the environment, nature, wildlife, and birdlife.

“Preserving the natural beauty and environment of the existing East Bay Golf Course and that wildlife and birdlife is undisturbed is one of our highest priorities,” said Dougherty. “We intend to have lots of green space, walking trails, biking trails, and preserving the existing golf course waterways as we design the proposed medical education campus.”

About the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine

The proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine would be an independent and freestanding institution overseen by a governing board located in Provo, Utah.

Founded and located in Provo, Utah in June 1998, Wasatch Educational will manage the development of the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine.www.wasatcheducational.com. Wasatch Educational is the holding company of Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. The mission of Wasatch Educational is to promote and develop healthcare education institutions.

Cushman & Wakefield’s ‘Tech Cities 2.0’ report profiles 25 North American cities making their mark in Tech

Tech Cities 2.0 highlights the tech industry’s critical impact on commercial real estate in the Salt Lake City and the Provo-Orem areas

 Salt Lake City, September 27, 2018 – Cushman & Wakefield today released Tech Cities 2.0 an annual report that identifies existing and emerging tech centers increasingly driving the North American economy and details their impact on the commercial real estate sector.

“Over the past few decades, Utah and in particular Salt Lake City and Provo-Orem areas have been at the heart of technological innovation,” said Gary Mangum, Managing Principal of Cushman & Wakefield in Salt Lake City. “The new Tech Cities 2.0 report validates that the Utah economic stability and growth is due in no small part to the many tech companies have been established in Utah as well as the many global brands that are choosing to lease additional office space in Salt Lake City and in the Provo-Orem area.”

A follow-up from last year’s inaugural Tech Cities 1.0 report, this year’s research reviewed all major North American markets, and groups the top cities into three categories based on how important the tech sector is to the local economy and real estate market: ‘tech is a critical component’ / ‘tech is a key driver’ / ‘tech is important’.

“As tech companies continue to dominate headlines and grow, a key question is how this affects commercial real estate. Building upon our inaugural Tech Cities report from last year, Tech Cities 2.0 offers new data and a further in-depth analysis of the marketplace,” Revathi Greenwood, Cushman & Wakefield’s Americas Head of Research, said.

“Tech is no longer limited to just traditional technology companies – media companies, retailers and even law firms are competing for the same spaces and talent as traditional tech companies. While the result can be seen in nationwide trends, we’ve identified key insights that impact companies across every industry,” Greenwood said.

Ken McCarthy, Cushman & Wakefield’s New York-based Principal Economist and Applied Research Lead for the U.S. said Tech Cities 2.0 demonstrates the profound impact the tech sector has had on commercial real estate in what appears to be one fell swoop but has been building since the financial crisis of 2008.

“Although we expect established markets like Silicon Valley to see continued investment, new tech hubs are emerging across North America, from Provo to Philadelphia, sustaining a period of tech-driven, economic growth unseen since the dot-com boom of the late 1990s.”

McCarthy said New York City had seen significant growth in the TAMI sector (Technology, Advertising, Media and Information). “If Silicon Valley is the brains of the tech sector, then New York City is the creative center. In this cycle, tech has been very important to New York City. TAMI employment growth has been much stronger than many other sectors and that growth has been centered in that Midtown South of Market, and that market in particular has seen significant growth in terms of both property values and rents.”

The tech industry has changed the way its companies and also those traditionally non-tech approach commercial real estate said Robert Sammons, Cushman & Wakefield’s Senior Director, Northern California Research.

“Both start-ups and big tech companies have recognized they need a footprint in the central cities to keep attracting millennial workers, and as a result, they are taking large chunks of high-rise buildings and trophy assets in dense urban areas – in addition to keeping their sprawling campuses in the suburbs,” Sammons said.

As well, he added that tech companies are driving demand as they continue to hunt for space and grabbing it in certain hot markets when they can find it. “With unemployment at 4.0% or lower in each of these markets, tech companies of all sizes are in a war for talent and must do their utmost to hold on to and recruit employees – and that means the best salaries, the best incentives, the best space and the best location. That last point has generally meant an urban or even suburban location that is mixed-use, walkable, bikeable and near mass transit,” he said.

“The trend for the start-ups and tech companies to occupy large spaces in metropolitan areas is occurring all over North America and especially in the cities our report identifies as ‘Tech is a critical component of the local economy and CRE market,’” Sammons said.
Combining employment, occupations, venture capital investment, and demographics statistics, this year’s list from Tech Cities 2.0 is separated into three major categories:

  • Tech is a critical component of the local economy and CRE market:
    • Austin
    • Boston
    • Provo
    • Raleigh/Durham
    • Salt Lake City
    • San Diego
    • San Francisco
    • Silicon Valley
    • Seattle
    • Washington, DC Metro
  • Tech is a key driver of the local economy and CRE market:
    • Atlanta
    • Dallas/Fort Worth
    • Denver
    • Minneapolis/St. Paul
    • Montreal
    • Portland, OR
    • Toronto
    • Vancouver
  •  Tech is important to the local economy and CRE market, but there are other important sectors as well:
    • Baltimore
    • Charlotte
    • Chicago
    • Greater Los Angeles
    • South Florida
    • New York City
    • Philadelphia

Key findings from Tech Cities 2.0 include:

  • In the first of half of last year, 42% of the square footage in the top 100 leases in North America were signed by tech companies.
  • The fastest growing tech employment market since 2010 is Provo, Utah. Though a smaller market than the others on the list, the number of people employed by tech companies increased 64.9%, surpassing the 62.7% increase in San Francisco.
  • Average asking rents in cities like Atlanta, Austin, Seattle, and San Francisco have increased more than 50% since 2010.
  • Property prices are skyrocketing. Among the Top 25, property prices have increased on average by 59%, with the greatest increases happening in Austin, Silicon Valley, and San Francisco.
  • Cities that are targets for venture capital funding are the most important tech cities in North America. Among the Top 25, VC funding grew by an average of $2.0 billion compared to $457 million for the top 101 markets.
  • The top four cities for new construction are all cities where tech is a critical factor in the local real estate market, including: Austin, Raleigh/Durham, Seattle, and San Francisco.

Bank of Utah to Acquire American Bank of Commerce

unnamedOGDEN, Utah, Sept. 13, 2018 – Two great, Utah-owned banks will soon join forces as BOU Bancorp, Inc., the holding company for Bank of Utah, plans to purchase AmBancorp, the holding company for American Bank of Commerce (AmBank). Douglas L. DeFries, President and CEO of BOU Bancorp, Inc. announced that both boards of directors have approved the merger and a definitive agreement has been signed. The transaction will be subject to approval by regulators and AmBancorp shareholders and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018. The three AmBank locations, with over $75 million in deposits, will bear the Bank of Utah name in Lindon, Provo and Heber City, Utah following the purchase. This will be the fifth acquisition in Bank of Utah’s history.

Bank of Utah currently operates 14 full-service bank branches, additional mortgage offices in St. George, Price, Logan and Sandy and trust services in both Ogden and Salt Lake City, Utah. The merger will increase Bank of Utah’s presence in Utah County by adding two more retail branches and will add the first Bank of Utah branch in Wasatch County.

“The union of these two great Utah organizations will provide a strong set of local banking experts and the most up-to-date products and services for individuals and businesses in what will be 17 deposit branches from Logan to Provo,” said DeFries. “We are very pleased to create a stronger, independent, Utah-based network of retail bank branches, with combined assets of over $1.4 billion.”

“The partnership with Bank of Utah allows our trusted bankers to continue offering locally-processed and financed commercial and residential loans, with the significant new benefit of more robust cash management services and greater choice in deposit accounts and online banking,” noted Leonel E. Castillo, President and CEO of AmBancorp. “Further, our customers will now enjoy trust services, including self-directed IRAs, insurance offerings, wealth management, larger lending limits and other excellent services. We are confident that our customers and staff will experience a smooth transition and will soon greatly appreciate the new opportunities available.”

BOU Bancorp, Inc. was advised in the transaction by Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, A Stifel Company, as financial advisor, and Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP as legal counsel. AmBancorp was advised by Sandler O’Neill + Partners, L.P. as financial advisor and Jones Waldo Holbrook & McDonough, PC as legal counsel.

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