AIM's 2007-2008 Legislative Scorecard Underscores Need for Improvement in Massachusetts

Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), the state's largest business advocacy organization with more than 7,000 Bay State businesses and institutions who collectively employ more than 675,000 employees, released the third edition of its biennial Legislative Scorecard. The Scorecard is designed to evaluate the pro-business voting record of each of the members of the Massachusetts Senate and House of Representatives.

The AIM Legislative Scorecard for 2007-2008 was calculated on votes in each chamber on important measures including health insurance reform, economic development policy, taxation, regulatory reform, energy, and the environment. There are seven House votes and eight Senate votes in the Scorecard.

For this Legislative session, the average Scorecard rating for members of the Senate was 49 percent, compared to 66 percent in 2005-2006. Ten members of the Senate scored above the average with five Republican Senators scoring a high of 67 percent. In the House, the average rating was 47 percent down from 78 percent in 2005-2006. Fifty members of the House scored above the average with 19 Republican members scoring the highest at 88 percent on the 100-point scale.

Brian Gilmore, AIM's Executive Vice President - Public Affairs noted, "It is was a challenge to calculate the Scorecard this Session, since there were fewer 'clear' roll call votes taken during the session." (A clear roll call is a vote on a specific issue itself, and not a voice vote.) In addition, he said, "The Scorecard is unable to measure those instances when the Legislature fails to address serious economic climate issues such reforming the state's unemployment insurance system or other business and economic climate concerns, and/or declines to consider anti-business measures."

Gilmore said, "Our members are disappointed by the ratings this session, and suggest that serious work needs to be done to improve upon the unsatisfactory trend during the 2008-2009 Legislative Session. The recent negative results in the AIM Business Confidence Index illustrate the consequences how ill-conceived public policy measures impact the business climate in Massachusetts."

Gilmore further noted, "The scorecard ratings may not be final for this session, because there is talk of reconvening the Legislature before the end of the year. We may have to prepare an update later, but we felt it was important to get these results out before the primary elections in September and the general election in November."

The complete AIM 2007-2008 Legislative Scorecard, with roll call records for each member of the House and the Senate can be found on AIM's website Associated Industries of Massachusetts.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Brian R. Gilmore, Executive Vice President - Public Affairs
Phone: (617) 262-1180
Website: www.aimnet.org

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