NMMA expands advocacy efforts

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The National Marine Manufacturers Association said in its Currents newsletter that it will expand its advocacy efforts at its boat shows. The U.S. trade association is holding a series of events, starting at this week’s Chicago and Atlanta boat shows, for members and exhibitors. The events are called “Propelling our Industry Forward.”

“For the last few years, we’ve held these events at the Atlanta and Atlantic City shows,” Nicole Vasilaros, NMMA senior vice president of government relations and legal affairs, told Trade Only Today. “We’ve decided to expand the reach to bigger shows around the country. The idea is to motivate exhibitors and local members to get more involved in advocacy efforts.”

After Atlanta and Chicago, the NMMA will host the events at the Minneapolis, New York, New England, and Atlantic City shows.

“We see these as a platform to connect with exhibitors as well as elected officials,” says Vasilaros. “In the case of elected officials, we can tour them around the show and they can meet dealers while hearing about the economic impact the industry has on their states.”

Vasilaros said the talks will range from international topics like tariffs to titling or tax reform issues in specific states. “We also discuss the latest economic numbers and will talk about national priorities like infrastructure reform,” she says.

The NMMA is also increasing its local advocacy efforts by hiring new staff to oversee the Southeast and Great Lakes regions. “They will help us expand our network by serving as eyes and ears on the ground,” says Vasilaros.