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We want to thank New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney and Senator Jeff VanDrew for meeting with us yesterday in Trenton.

Following the Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors meeting in March, Senator VanDrew worked with our chamber to arrange a meeting with the Senate President and members of the South Jersey business community to discuss the $15 an hour minimum wage issue as it pertains to small businesses.

 Senator Sweeney was open to all conversations and concerns of each business that was represented at the round-table discussion. He was especially concerned with how it would affect a tourism destination like Ocean City. Senator Sweeney already included in the new proposed legislation, provisions that would exempt 14-18 year-old employees for the new minimum wage increases. There would also be a training period for other employees and additional measures for small businesses that would be considered in the proposed legislation. There are still concerns to be defined and refined.

Senator Sweeney and Senator VanDrew certainly showed they are champions of small business in South Jersey and realize how difficult it is to survive in the New Jersey business climate. We cannot thank them enough for taking the time out of their busy schedules to meet with us. The outcome of the meeting was extremely positive. We will keep you posted on new developments.

Michele with Sen Sweeney










Pictured left to right: Wes Kazmarck, Surf Mall; Patty Talese, Jon & Patty's Coffee Bar and Bistro; New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney; Senator Jeff VanDrew; Michele Gillian, Executive Director of Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce