Utah Drug Card helps cut prescription costs

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Utah Drug Card from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Over a year ago, the Salt Lake Chamber began offering the Utah Drug Card, a new statewide prescription assistance. Since it’s introduction, the card has helped thousands of Utahns save money on prescription drugs.

The program provides free drug cards to all Utah residents and offers savings of up to 75 percent on prescription drugs. This program has no restrictions to membership, no income requirements, no age limitations and there are no applications to fill out. Utah Drug Card is accepted at over 50,000 pharmacy locations across the country.

The Utah Drug Card increases the affordability of prescription medications for both uninsured and underinsured Utahns. The program can also be used by people who have health insurance coverage with no prescription benefits, a common scenario in many health savings accounts (HSA) and high deductible health plans. Additionally, people who have prescription coverage can use this program for non-formulary or non-covered drugs.

The Utah Drug Card is a solution to the confusing maze of discount prescription programs that have appeared in recent years. Many of these programs only cover certain drugs, charge fees and some have membership restrictions including age and income requirements. Utah residents can download a free card, search drug pricing, and locate participating pharmacies at www.utahdrugcard.com.

Utah population surges to 2.76 million, nets fourth Congressional seat

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

The U.S. Census data was released today and we learned that Utah is now home to 2,763,885 people—an increase of nearly 24 percent. If you want to be specific, that means 530,716 more people live in the Beehive State than did a decade ago, give or take that’s 145 people per day.

With an increase in population comes an increase in political influence. Utah is one of eight states to gain at least one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Only two states gained more than one seat: Texas (+4) and Florida (+2).

Nationally, population grew nearly 10 percent with Americans now numbering 308.7 million. Utah is the 35th most populous state in the union.

The numbers are the result of the 2010 Census. The Census is the largest peacetime activity of the federal government and is required by Article 1 Section 2 of the Constitution, which says, “Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct.”

Leadership Utah Alumni show holiday spirit

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Leadership Utah Alumni helps Utahns in need from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

When Chamber members participate in Leadership Utah, they get a behind-the-scenes look at our community. One of the sessions shows participants the important role of the welfare system in our community. The impact of that visit stays with many and every year they come together as the Leadership Utah Alumni to help Utahns in need.

The alumni assembled 200 toiletry kits with basic supplies including bars of soap, wash cloths, toothbrushes and toothpaste, and combs. They then delivered the supplies to the Road Home and spent a few hours volunteering their services.

“There are 99 families and 168 children that don’t have a better option (than the Road Home),” said Jason Steed, chair of the Leadership Utah Alumni steering committee. “It’s one thing to have opportunities to donate but to be able to participate, to be here, to collaborate, it means so much more that way.”

Designed by the Salt Lake Chamber, Leadership Utah is a program intended to provide opportunities for business leaders to learn more about the challenges facing the community.  In its 24-year history, Leadership Utah has graduated more than 1,000 participants – all of whom are dedicated to making an impact on their community.

Business supports Care to Clear the Air program

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

The holidays are on everyone’s mind these days as we countdown to Christmas and get ready to ring in the New Year, but January is just around the corner. If you’ve been through a Utah winter, you know that means the dreaded inversion isn’t far behind.

A few months back Utahns were challenged to help Clear the Air. That effort resulted in nearly 2.2 million pounds of emissions saved, the equivalent of saving just under 60,000 gallons of gas.

That saves money and keeps the air clean. And now it’s time to make the same effort with the Care to Clear the Air campaign. The month-long program runs January 2011 and encourages residents to utilize winter-friendly TravelWise strategies at least once a week for a personal emissions reduction of 20 percent.

Through interactive community events, real-time Yellow/Red air text alerts, weekly newsletters and fun freebies, you can do your part to help clear the air and limit the scope and impact of the temperature inversions that trap air pollutants in the valley.

It’s easy to do, just go to caretocleartheair.org. You just sign up and choose from a number TravelWise strategies you can use help reduce the amount of air pollution that makes those hazy days so ugly and unhealthy.  You can even choose to have text message alerts sent to your phone so you know when we have a yellow or red air day.

Who’s the Boss? City Creek Center names GM

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

The City Creek Center is taking shape in downtown Salt Lake City, the skybridge is in place across Main Street and the exterior is making it easier to see how those artist’s renderings will look as actual brick-mortar and a retractable roof.

And now we know who will be in charge of the retail operation of the impressive project.

Taubman Centers, owner and operator of the retail portion of the City Creek mixed-use development, has named Linda Wardell as general manager

of City Creek’s retail operations. Wardell will be responsible for retailer relations, marketing, tourism, sponsorship and community outreach for the retail center.

On behalf of the business community, we welcome Wardell to town and congratulate her on her new position.

“People are so excited about City Creek Center,” said Wardell. “My goal is to exceed everyone’s expectations and to make City Creek Center a world-class, memorable experience for families, tourists and anyone who visits.”

The retail center anchors and complements the 23-acre City Creek master plan developed by City Creek Reserve, Inc. When completed in 2012, the sustainably designed, walkable urban community of offices, residences and shops will make Salt Lake City one of few cities in the nation with a vibrant, mixed-use development at its core.

A seasoned retail executive, Linda Wardell has more than 20 years experience in shopping center management, marketing and operations, most recently with Taubman over the last four years. Prior to that, she spent 9 years with Glimcher Realty Trust where she opened two new shopping centers and served as vice president of marketing.

A native of Atlanta, Ga., Wardell earned her B.A. in communications from Mercer University in Macon.

Utah exports and Free Trade with South Korea

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Utah Exports & Free Trade with South Korea from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

After back-to-back years of new record highs for merchandise exports, Utah is on pace to set a new record this year–with projections showing the total may surpass the $13 billion mark.

We sat down with Lew Cramer, president and CEO of the World Trade Center Utah to discuss Utah’s exports and the president’s recent free trade agreement with South Korea. The White House estimates the agreement will add some 70,000 new jobs and could boost U.S. exports by another $11 billion.

Taking to the air in support of the Utah Compact

Monday, December 13th, 2010

Since it’s unveiling Nov. 11, nearly 3,000 people have joined business, community, political and religious leaders and added their names in support of The Utah Compact. That impressive groundswell of support has people thinking about the real effects of immigration legislation on the economy, law enforcement, families and what it says about us as a free society.

Yesterday, Senator Jake Garn and Chamber Executive Vice President Natalie Gochnour joined KSL’s Bruce Lindsay on “Sunday Edition” to discuss The Utah Compact.

Video Courtesy of KSL.com

We continue to encourage all Utahns to read The Utah Compact and to add their names to the list of supporters.

Plenty to like in the governor’s budget proposal

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Governor Herbert rolled out his FY2012 budget proposal today and there is plenty of good news.

A year ago the budget was the story of the legislative session as the state faced a sizable gap that had to be closed. This year, the financial picture looks much better and the governor’s proposed budget calls for increased funding for K-12 education. That’s good news because public education saw an increase of 11,000 students last year with no additional money and this year another 14,500 are on the way. The proposal also includes an increase in funding for extended day kindergarten as well as enhanced assessments of elementary students to help keep kids from falling behind.

The Chamber also supports the governor’s proposed budget because it contains no increase in taxes. Our economy is recovering but that recovery isn’t bulletproof. Allowing Utahns to keep and spend the money they earn is exactly what the doctor ordered for our economy.

We also weigh in on transportation funding and economic development. You can read the Chamber’s official statement HERE and you can read the governor’s budget proposal HERE.

EVE 2011: New Year’s Eve celebration in downtown SLC

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

EVE, Salt Lake’s New Year’s Eve event, will be a gigantic street party downtown on Dec. 29, 30 and 31. Tens of thousands of people will gather for celebrations taking place on West Temple between 100 and 200 South and in the Calvin Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center. There will be plenty of places to chill down and warm up and a thousand ways to celebrate. Hours are 6-10 p.m. on the 29th and 30th and 6 p.m.-midnight on the 31st.

EVE will include, live local music, dance parties, ski and snowboard action sports competitions, DJs, fine art performances, film screenings, laser shows, art installations, activities for kids, interactive resolutions, fire dancers and a spectacular midnight fireworks show on Dec. 31st.

“We are thrilled to launch EVE 2.0,” said Jason Mathis, executive director of the Downtown Alliance. “We look forward to three fantastic days of revelry as we kiss 2010 goodbye and say hello to a bright new year.”

Signature projects include eBay It Forward, EVE Air, Battle of the Tribute Bands II, BounceTown, a fire and ice sculpture garden, the Bandemonium main stage and Ballroom (think thousands of beach balls, a DJ and lighting installations).

eBay It Forward, a community giving project, will give Utahns an opportunity to contribute treasured items to a massive art installation, raising funds for local charities. Community members are invited to bring items that were meaningful to them in 2010 to the eBay Pavilion Dec. 28-31. With descriptions and stories attached, the items will be collected in a massive interactive community art display. There will be a live auction on New Year’s Eve. In Jan., the items will be listed by eBay’s charitable initiative, eBay Giving Works, and sold around the world on ebay.com. All proceeds will go to the Huntsman Cancer Foundation, Best Friends Animal Sanctuary and Volunteers of America Utah Homeless Youth Resource Center. eBay It Forward donations can be dropped off at the Salt Lake Arts Center beginning Dec. 9.

EVE Air features ski and snowboard action sports competitions with dozens of top athletes conquering a 150 foot long, three-story high slope covered with 50 tons of snow.

The Battle of the Tribute Bands returns on Dec. 30 with local musicians impersonating rock legends: KISS, Poison and Ozzy. From classic rock to indie rock pop and punk, soul to electro-dance, live, local music at EVE promises to entertain with bands like Feel Good Patrol, Muscle Hawk, Daniel Day Trio, Eyes Lips Eyes, Cub Country and more.

Sponsored by Intermountain LiVe, BounceTown is a massive town of inflatable playgrounds. It doesn’t matter what you do, just be active.

The Ballroom will have 2011 beach balls of all sizes, light shows, music and dancing.

The Never Ending White Elephant Gift Exchange will be full of mystery white-elephant gifts for exchange—appropriate for all ages, unwrapped gifts will be wrapped on-site.

Community partnerships add to the vibrancy of EVE. Temple Square will have multiple free concerts with world music like Scottish bagpipes, Polynesian traditional song and dance and Japanese drummers, family history crafts, storytelling, a sing-a-long to Broadway show tunes and the spectacular display of holiday lights. Clark Planetarium will offer cosmic shows to EVE revelers. The Salt Lake Arts Center will offer visual and interactive artist-made karaoke. Off Broadway Theatre will perform improve comedy. The Salt Lake Film Society at Broadway Center Cinemas will show Charlie Chaplin film shorts.

EVE passes are $10/day and children under 10 are free. EVE passes can be purchased at participating Fresh Markets, Maverik and at on-site box offices (cash only) at the Salt Palace, Off Broadway Theatre, Broadway Center Cinemas and the Gateway concierge.

Downtown restaurants and hotels are offering EVE packages and special pricing for the three-day event, visit eveslc.com for details. And, American Express is sponsoring a new bounce back program for downtown restaurant, hotel and entertainment deals January 1-16 for people who keep their EVE passes and want to kick off the new year right.

Ride TRAX free Dec. 29-31 with your EVE pass, courtesy of Rio Tinto’s Kennecott Utah Copper.

More information at www.eveslc.com.

EVE is sponsored by the Downtown Alliance, American Express, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Foundation, City Weekly, Coca-Cola, Comcast, Corporate Staging, eBay, Intermountain LiVe, KUTV2, Now Playing Utah, Rio Tinto’s Kennecott Utah Copper, Salt Lake City Corporation, Wells Fargo and Zoo, Arts and Parks.

EVE is supported by City Creek, Clark Planetarium, Fresh Market, KCPW, KRCL, Maverik, Off Broadway Theatre, Rocky Mountain Power, Salt Lake Film Society, Salt Lake Arts Center and The Gateway.

Double-stacking trains make trucking more efficient for C.R. England

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

C.R. England wins efficiency award from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

(Images in video courtesy Douglas C. Pizac/CR England, c2010)

Based right here in Salt Lake, C.R. England is the world’s largest refrigerated carrier—and it’s more than a trucking company.

This week C.R. England was honored with the Thermo King “Energy Efficiency Leader Award” for its commitment to environmental responsibility and operational efficiency. Moving refrigerated goods by rail over long distances before utilizing trucks to take them the rest of the way provides significant savings for the organization and, ultimately, the customer.

This year, C.R. England doubled the size of its intermodal fleet and plans to continue expansion.

C.R. England vice president of intermodal, Zach England, stopped by the Salt Lake Chamber to discusses the financial savings, reducing his company’s carbon footprint and the reason double stacking is the limit.