We are often asked questions about who we are and how we go about conducting our business. Here are some of the most often inquired about topics:

Q: When was the SCCBC formed?

Q: How many members does SCCBC currently have?
71 (25 Board-level; 46 Council-level)

Q: What is SCCBC’s mission?
To advocate for economic and community vitality throughout Santa Cruz County.

Q: What are SCCBC’s “core values?”

  1. Practice informed advocacy for county-wide business and community vitality
  2. Serve as a trusted and persuasive voice throughout the community
  3. Build, enhance and foster working relationships between the business community and government/public stakeholders

Q: How often do the Board of Directors meet? How often to the working committees meet?
The Board of Directors meets ten (10) times per year, with a “vacation” in August. In February the Annual Membership Meeting serves as the Board meeting.

Each of the three (3) working committees (Government Affairs & Economic Development; Infrastructure & Transportation; and, Membership & Programs) meet on a monthly basis unless otherwise determined by the individual committee.

Q: Are non-voting (Council-level) members allowed to attend Board meetings?
Yes. We invite the non-voting (Council-level) members to all Board meetings. Non-voting members also sit on our three (3) working committees (Government Affairs & Economic Development; Infrastructure & Transportation; and, Membership & Programs). Additionally, we hold members-only breakfasts and public luncheons throughout the year. Lastly, we invite non-voting members to sit in on face-to-face meetings with elected officials and public administrators.

Q: When SCCBC takes a stance on issues, how loudly it is heard by government officials?
We work hard to establish the type of relationships we feel it takes to “cut through the clutter” and have the business voice heard by our public officials. We meet with officials as often as possible in order to maintain excellent relationships that benefit both the private- and public-sectors.

It should also be noted that we do not always have to initiate contact. Local officials contact us on a regular basis to ask for our feedback on policy issues, request that we voice our thoughts at public meetings or visit with them face-to-face to build consensus.

Q: How often is there dissension among voting members? In other words, are political-type votes usually unanimous?
It is typical to have a voting member “abstain” from a vote related to a sensitive issue. If that is the case, we will make certain to word our position/support statement in a way that reflects a vote that was not unanimous. If the vote is unanimous, we clearly communicate that at the beginning of the statement. We try our best to make sure each member votes their individual position and not what they think the others want. We do not make any of our votes public.

Q: Is there a limit to the number of voting members?

Q: Does SCCBC make presentations to elected bodies or is involvement generally restricted to letters? Editorials? Other?
We try to be strategic in our advocacy efforts. If speaking before a governing body on an issue rather than sending a letter/email is what we feel would be the most effective strategy, we make sure to have someone present.

All comments made at public meetings/hearings are approved by the voting-members and communicated, with the opportunity for feedback, to the non-voting (Council-level) members. Generally, SCCBC comments originate from our three (3) working committees.

Additionally, we frequently send letters/emails to public officials, and have submitted a number of editorials/letters to the editor which have been published.

Q: How does SCCBC handle situations when an issue pertaining to one if its member is being considered by an elected body (voting or non)?
Typically, we start by having a presentation/discussion of the issue within one of the working committees (more than likely Government Affairs & Economic Development or Infrastructure & Transportation). Recommendations for next steps are formed by the committee and then communicated to the Board of Directors for discussion/approval. The issue can be brought up by a voting (Board-level) or non-voting (Council-level) member. A non-voting member can present to the Board at a Board meeting, if necessary.