Chamber of commerce elects new officers, celebrates local business at annual dinner

— Nearly 100 members of the Greater Cazenovia Area Chamber of Commerce and guests filled the downstairs rooms of the Lincklaen House for the chamber’s annual dinner meeting last Tuesday, Nov. 12.

Outgoing GCACC President Gene Gissin gave brief remarks on the state of the chamber during 2013 and mentioned many of the new businesses that have joined the chamber’s ranks this year.

The GCACC has 314 members — with about two dozen having joined the organization within the past three years — a central main office location on Albany Street where people constantly stop in for information and an average of 1,800 hits per week on its website, Gissin said.

“When other communities are losing businesses we’re gaining businesses,” he said. “We’ve brought people here and kept people here, and when people are here our stores do well.”

He welcomed numerous new Cazenovia “brick and mortar” businesses to the GCACC ranks: Allure Fitness & Dance, AmeriCU Credit Union, ARTicles, BG Buda’s Cucina Italiana, Blushing Rose Botique, Breathing Space, Cazenovia Equipment, Curtin & DeJoseph, Flowers by Foxgloves, J. D. Hunter Fine Furnishings, Key Bank, Laboratory Alliance of CNY, Latte Da! LLC, Owahgena Pizzeria, Owera Vineyards, Pewter Spoon Café, Pro-Tel Staffing and Prudential CNY Realty.

Cazenovia Town Supervisor Ralph Monforte then gave a talk on Madison County’s buy local campaign, “Buy Madison County: Calculate the Advantage,” which was created to educate local consumers about the advantage of buying goods and services in the county in which they live.

Nearly one-quarter of the county’s $110 million budget comes from sales tax revenue, and those revenues help fund numerous activities in the county — and directly offsets the taxes paid by residents of every town in the county, Monforte said. If every county resident kept $3.52 more of their purchases in Madison County every day, that would add up to $1.5 million in additional county revenue to be used for local projects and programs, to fund non-profits and to lower tax rates.

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