LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Fighting for funding on Capitol Hill! Right now, the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce is leading a large delegation in Washington DC, making their voices heard on issues facing Nevada.
Today is day two of four on the Vegas Chamber's trip to our nation's capital. Vegas Chamber President and CEO, Mary Beth Sewald, says they make this trip every year, but this year's fly-in is among the largest and most important as Las Vegas continues to recover from COVID-19.
This year's group is made up of about 180 business and local leaders. They have a busy schedule that includes a mixture of meetings with the Nevada Congressional Delegation and other members of Congress, and briefings from policy experts with the US Chamber and Brookings Institution.
The Vegas Chamber's main goal is to secure federal funding for issues affecting Nevada. Sewald tells 13 Action News their top priority is helping Las Vegas' economy recover from COVID-19. She believes the best ways to do that is by making sure Nevada gets its fair share of Recovery Act money to help small businesses bounce back, and securing funding for workforce development, so Nevada can retrain workers, especially those who lost their jobs during the pandemic.
"Nevada’s economy continues to be one of the hardest hit in the entire nation. We have the highest unemployment rate in the US, our core tourism industry has only partially recovered, and a lot of small businesses are still struggling to survive. Nevada’s congressional delegation and other decision-makers in Washington DC really have to hear from the business community about how that recovery funding could help employers and also employees in Nevada recover and be better able to thrive," said Sewald.
She adds that other priorities include infrastructure funding for Interstate 15 and Interstate 11, the major roadways connecting Las Vegas to California and Arizona, and better broadband internet throughout the state, especially in rural Nevada.