News & Updates

Community Partner of the Month: Autism Speaks

Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, will hold its 2017 Autism Speaks San Diego Walk event on September 30, 2017, at Liberty Station. Proceeds from San Diego’s 14th annual walk will support Autism Speaks’ mission to promote solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of over 10,000 San Diego individuals with autism and their families. Registration for the event is free.

This September 30th, over 4,000 people are expected to participate event will include a 5k walk, Kids Zone, live entertainment, sponsor and partner booths with local autism resources and Team Village for teams that raise $2,500 or more.  Autism Speaks will also host a free Kickoff Party on September 4th at the Del Mar Racetrack for registered walkers.

Autism Speaks San Diego Walk is helping fund vital services and innovative solutions that improve quality of life for people with autism in our community,” said Scott Salter, 2017 San Diego Walk Committee Chair. “We are eager to support crucial work by researchers, service providers, and medical experts, close to home and across the country.”

The walk program is Autism Speaks largest fundraising vehicle which has enabled local funding for over $1.5 million in Science and Research grants in San Diego and over $268,000 in Community Service grants, awarded to local service providers to enhance programs for people with autism.

Local sponsors of the San Diego walk include: Mission Federal Credit Union, Professional Maintenance Systems, Prava Construction Services, Inc., Butterfly Effects, ACES, Home Depot and New York Life.

Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the lifespan, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. We do this through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of autism spectrum disorder; advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions. We empower people with autism and their families with resources, online tools and information covering the life span.

Contact: Larissa Kerstetter

Phone: (619) 318-7424


To register for the walk:

NAFTA Roundtable with Congressman Darrell Issa

On August 7th, the Chamber hosted a Good Government Speaker Series roundtable discussion on NAFTA renegotiations with Congressman Darrell Issa. San Diego and Baja California have leveraged NAFTA to create a $2.5 billion manufacturing supply chain that supports co-production between the two cities. Congressman Issa highlighted the importance on modernizing NAFTA and harmonizing environmental standards amongst the three countries. Although communication between different government agencies across borders can be challenging, he added that when success gives you a problem, it is solvable. Problems arising from failures are much difficult to fix, but NAFTA has been a success all along.

The conversation turned to automotive manufacturing and how cars are a great example of products made in the U.S. with the support from Canada and Mexico. Today, 10% of San Diego’s jobs are in manufacturing, because companies allocate here to create intellectual property and co-produce with Mexico. As a result, manufacturing is the second highest paid sector in San Diego after IT. “NAFTA can systematically reduce the barriers on manufacturing across the border, let’s keep looking for opportunities” he added.

In closure, Congressman Issa noted that NAFTA renegotiations is an opportunity for a dialogue on immigration. He commented on the correlation between trade and immigration, and highlighted the need for nimble immigration policies which respond to the changing needs of trade. Rep. Issa further noted the importance of a guest worker program in order to address the shortage of labor force in the U.S. in certain industries and prevent hiring of undocumented labor.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce presented Congressman Issa with the “Spirit of Enterprise” award, naming him the champion of small business organizations, for his 100% voting record on businesses’ highest priority issues last year.

Member Spotlight: Sherwin Williams

Sherwin Williams Color Snap In-Home Color Consultations

Our professionally trained In-Home Color Consultant will meet with you in the comfort of your home to help you choose the perfect colors. Our goal is to help you create a space that you will love. During the 90-minute in-home visit, your In-Home Color Consultant will create a custom color palette that fits your decorating style. You will also receive product and overall project advice that will help give your space a professional, finished appearance.


  • A $50 Sherwin-Williams gift card* If you are a member of our PaintPerks™ program, when you purchase your $95 color consultation, you will receive a $50 Sherwin-Williams gift card to use toward the purchase of your paint and supplies.
  • A pre-consultation phone call Prior to your in-home consultation, your In-Home Color Consultant will call you to gather important information about your unique decorating style, as well as the specifics of your project.
  • A project shopping list Upon the completion of your in-home color consultation you’ll receive a customized paint store shopping list with your selected colors and everything you’ll need to complete your project. If you’re ready to get started, your In-Home Color Consultant will even have your local Sherwin- Williams store prepare your order of paint and supplies for pickup at your convenience.
  • Paint Sample- Try one on us! If you’d like to test your color choices before purchasing your paint, you’ll receive a coupon for a buy-one-get-one-free paint sample.

Stop into your local Sherwin Williams to book your consultation today or give Cathy a call for more information!

Cathy Kaczmarczyk
Color Program Supervisor
Sherwin Williams
Cell: (858) 322-4379

10News LEADership Award Recipient Rosie Gonzalez

Rosie Gonzalez is honored with the 10News LEADership Award for donating materials and organizing an army of women who produce handmade quilts for children and adults touched by cancer.

Chamber hosted California Attorney General Xavier Becerra

Newly appointed state Attorney General Xavier Becerra met with Chamber members for a Good Government Speaker Series program to discuss the role of the Attorney General with respect to working with businesses. Issues discussed included immigration, the environment, and regulation.

Bipartisan Vote to Extend Cap and Trade to 2030

On July 17th, the California State Assembly and Senate voted with a two-thirds super majority to extend the program through 2030. The vote threshold achieved was important to ensure the validity of the program should it be considered a “tax” by a future court decision. The program is a market-based mechanism designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The program extension was opposed by some Republicans who argued the measure would negatively affect the poor by increasing prices for fuel and food.

Chamber Hosted First of Two Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) Workshops

Last week, the Chamber hosted the first of two workshops on Community Choice Aggregation. This workshop followed the release of the City of San Diego’s CCA feasibility study which looked at options to help the city increase the percentage of renewable energy on the grid. The audience heard from experts with different perspectives and had an opportunity to get their questions answered. Over the course of these two workshops, we aim to identify what is best for our businesses, residents, and our region. Achieving 100 percent renewable energy by 2035 was a key component of the city’s landmark Climate Action Plan, which was supported by the Chamber. Watch the full panel discussion on our Facebook page.

The next workshop will be held on August 30th, for more details and to sign up click here.

City of San Diego Hosted “Housing Action Day” on July 24th

The City of San Diego City Council adopted three important pro-housing policies on July 24th during what has been dubbed “Housing Action Day.” In response to the housing crisis caused by affordability and supply, Mayor Faulconer and members of City Council have worked with various stakeholders including the Chamber to identify a variety of solutions. Many Chamber members made their voices heard on the importance of these pro-housing policies through the Chamber’s contact your councilmember campaign.

To recap, those policies are:

  • Streamlining of the permitting process for additional dwelling units, aka “granny flats.” These units represent an opportunity to house extended family members, students and those with less extensive space needs at a lower cost than a traditional home. Removing some of the regulatory barriers to these units and seeking lower fees will assist those looking to add a unit to their existing property.
  • Deterring frivolous CEQA appeals for projects, which will add certainty for developers while preserving the opportunity for concerned community groups to participate in the appeals process where appropriate.
  • Refining the Affordable/Sustainable Expedite program, by expanding which projects are eligible for expedited permitting. By allowing more projects to qualify, units can come to market faster and provide housing relief.

Chamber Partners with REALTORS® to Release Housing Scorecard

Last month the Chamber released a study with the Greater San Diego Association of REALTORS® finding the region’s housing crisis is on track to get much worse by 2020, driving even more seniors and families out of the Golden State and hurting our local economy. The “Housing Scorecard” compares the progress of each of the 18 cities and the County of San Diego in permitting the construction of new homes and provides an accurate depiction of how the housing market is impacting San Diegans.

Key findings of the Housing Scorecard include:

  • The San Diego region as a whole is on pace to produce only 50 percent of units needed to accommodate population growth
  • Of the four income categories – very low, low, moderate, and above moderate – only the “above moderate” category is seeing close to adequate production to meet the need
  • Only four of the 18 cities are building enough units to meet the need: Coronado, Lemon Grove, San Marcos, and Vista

For more on the Scorecard visit,

48 Hours in Toronto Delegation

Build Ties to Canada’s Business Capital MAPLE Business Council® is organizing a special two-day delegation to Toronto, Ontario, Canada for businesses, investors, exporters and service providers to get a turnkey overview of Canada’s largest market (4th largest in North America).

Learn more here.