Arlington Chamber of Commerce Blog

 

What is the Chamber of Commerce?

by Admin 19. September 2013 04:47

And What is it Not?
by Cassie Bate, Member Services Administrator, Arlington Chamber of Commerce

The Arlington Chamber of Commerce is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit association of businesses and organizations serving the Arlington business community. As a member-based organization, the mission of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce is to strengthen businesses and the economic environment for those who work, live and do business in Arlington. We focus our efforts on business to business and business to community opportunities to accomplish this mission, including hosting more than 100 events a year, connecting business leaders to the community through our various committees, and more.

There are many things the Chamber is, but there are also a few things that it is not.

The Arlington Chamber is not…

1. The Arlington County Government
The Chamber is not a part of the local, state, or federal government. We work very closely with Arlington County, and many departments are members of the Chamber, however, we are not funded by tax dollars and we are not a branch of the County. I can’t tell you how many phone calls I get that end with the question, “Can you transfer me to the Arlington County [fill in the blank] Department?”  I am always happy to look up the correct number, but it is important for people to understand that we are not part of the government, and therefore cannot directly transfer anyone to their offices.

2. A Tourism Organization
While I think working in tourism would be an awesome job, I was never trained for it. The Chamber staff lives and works in Arlington and we fully support the tourism industry. Many hotels are members and we recently partnered with Arlington Economic Development to fight for the Transient Occupancy Tax for Arlington hotels. However, we are not a visitor center, and I cannot tell you which hotels have free parking or compare rates for hotels. For information on visiting Arlington go to www.StayArlington.com. We also do not work for the Metro. For information on transportation, visit www.WMATA.com.

3. A Resident Information Center
We get a lot of calls and emails from people looking to relocate to Arlington County. The more the merrier! While the Chamber offers Relocation Packets, upon request, to individuals looking to move to the area, we are not the authority on apartments, real estate, setting up utilities, property taxes, or other information pertinent to new residents. For information about moving to Arlington, visit www.ArlingtonVA.us.

While there are a few misconceptions about what the Chamber does, our main focus is centered on the Arlington business community. We receive a variety of phone calls every day and try to help to the best of our ability. If we don’t know the answer, we will direct you to someone who does. If you would like to search for local businesses, please visit our Business Directory. I am always available to answer and questions you may have about Chamber membership or the business community: chamber@arlingtonchamber.org, 703-525-2400. 


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