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Laven re-elected to the state chamber board

Shari Laven

Shari Laven was re-elected to the 51-member Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors for 2017-18. A resident of Osakis, she is president of Viking Bank in Alexandria and will begin her new term during the board's conference and annual meeting on Thursday, Nov. 16.

"My priorities for the next term are to continue to be a voice for issues facing businesses in Douglas County," she said, specifically mentioning workforce shortage and business tax relief. "Several of the challenges business face in Douglas County are similar to those faced by businesses statewide."

She plans to continue hosting the Minnesota Chamber policy tour sessions in Alexandria, which inform local businesses about statewide policy efforts.

The volunteer board represents businesses of all types and sizes across Minnesota. It also sets public policy priorities, lobbies for the statewide business community and supports business-friendly candidates for public office.

This year, the board's legislative successes included business property tax relief, raising the tax-exempt level for estates from from $2 million to $3 million by 2020, and funding grants for communities that need more childcare providers. The one failure it cites on its website was Gov. Dayton's veto of an act to prevent local governments from setting local minimum wage and requiring certain benefits for workers.