Baker/Polito Administration Schedule Listening Sessions across Massachusetts

The Baker/Polito Administration would like to hear first-hand from the business community on what it thinks the state can do to help them grow and prosper.

The Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and the Office of Business Development will hold ten listening sessions across Massachusetts.
Housing & Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash will be holding a small business listening session on Thursday, May 25th at 7:30 a.m. at Mount Wachusett Community College in Gardner.

Click link to register.

May 25 Listening Session MWCC

2017 Super Raffle Winners

$10,000 – #302 – Brian Fontaine
Valley Florist, Greenhouses & Gifts, Gardner

Sold by Bob Hurtubise

$1,000 – #122 – Tom Hallgren, Barre

Sold by Attorney Ann Meilus

$750 – #82 – David and Laura LaBrack, Winchendon

Sold by Ann Racine

$750 – #118 – IC Federal Credit Union Group, Westminster

Sold by Brenda Buckley

$750 – #57 – John Shaw, Templeton

Sold by Andrew Boucher

$750 – #181 – Polish American Citizens Club, Gardner

Sold by Jeff Gallant

$250 – #128 – Tuesday Night Ladies Golf Group, Fitchburg

Sold by Celeste Drake

$250 – #256 – MWCC Financial Aid Group, Gardner

Sold by John Henshaw

$250 – #85 – Donald Fluet, Leominster

Sold by Ann Racine

$250 – 47 – Jeffrey Cogswell, Worcester

Sold by Jeff Ashworth

$250 – #383 – Jeff Ashworth, Jeff Gallant, Amy Fantoni, Suzette Goguen, Gardner
Sold by Jeff Ashworth

Thank You to Our Super Raffle Ticket Sellers

Super Sellers

Jeffrey Ashworth, Athol Savings Bank

Ken Tomasetti, Advanced Cable Ties

Andrew Boucher, Boucher Funeral Home

Bob Hurtubise, 101 Mini Storage

Anne LeBlanc, John’s Sport Shop

Celeste Drake, Lynde Hardware & Supply

Joseph G. Sova, Avidia Bank

Suzette Goguen, Suzette’s Breakfast & Lunch

Michael Budwick, Gardner Ten Pins

Jeffrey Gallant, CPA

Jeffrey Aubuchon, Aubuchon Hardware

Ken LaBrack, Volunteer

Additional Sellers

Scot Barrett, BDO USA, LLP

Trevor Beauregard, City of Gardner

Brenda Buckley, IC Federal Credit Union

Dawn Casavant, Heywood Hospital

Christof Chartier, C.M. Chartier Contracting

Chris Daly, Daly’s Property Shoppe

Anthony DeSando, Volunteer

Caroline Fluet, UNITIL

Arthur Gagne, Eastern Propane & Oil

James Gallant, Priscilla Candy Shop

Sarah Galvin, Fidelity Bank

Attorney Mark Goldstein, Law Office of Mark A. Goldstein

Tammy Hawkins, Athol Savings Bank

John Henshaw, Mount Wachusett Community College

Tracy Hutchinson, GAAMHA, Inc.

Ryan McGuane, Advent Financial Planners

Attorney Ann Meilus, Landry & Meilus, LLP

Ann Racine, GVNA HealthCare, Inc.

Henry Tessman, Great Wolf Lodge

Chris Woodcock, TYCO/SimplexGrinnell

Injunction halts implementation of new overtime regulations

On November 22, 2016 a federal judge from the Eastern Judicial District in Texas issued a nationwide temporary injunction halting the Department of Labor’s implementation of the new overtime rules scheduled to go into effect December 1, 2016. The lawsuit was filed by 21 states attorneys generals and several employer groups.  Based on the ruling, the Judge reasoned that the significant increase in the salary level effectively eliminated the duties test and exceeded the statutory authority of the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”). This injunction does not mean the OT rule changes are gone forever. They are simply on hold pending the final outcome of the lawsuit in east Texas.

This injunction means that employers do not have to implement the changes to employee classifications and pay by December 1, 2016. Given the timing of the decision, however, many employers may have already implemented the required changes. Furthermore, if the DOL is successful in the east Texas lawsuit, then the implementation of the rule may be immediate. Unfortunately this development leaves employers between the proverbial “rock and a hard place. “ To add complication to this issue, it is possible that the Trump administration will roll back this regulation if not eliminate it altogether.

Based on the current legal and political maneuverings regarding the new OT rule, employers who have not yet taken action would be best advised to halt any planned implementation of the new OT rule pending either revisions from the new administration’s DOL, or the resolution of the east Texas lawsuit. Employers should consider consulting an employment attorney for further guidance.

The Greater Gardner Chamber of Commerce will keep our members advised as the situation changes or as more information becomes available.

New England Patriots Defensive End Rob Ninkovich provides Keynote Address at Chamber Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Awareness Event

The Greater Gardner Chamber of Commerce welcomed special guest Rob Ninkovich, New England Patriots Defensive End to Great Wolf Lodge for a Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Awareness event.

The event, held on the evening of Tuesday, October 11, 2016 drew over 200 attendees and addressed the issues of suicide, mental health concerns and opioid addiction in the northern Worcester County region.

Rob Ninkovich has been a key player for the New England Patriots since 2009 and has been a member of two Super Bowl teams. He has been touched by suicide in his professional life.  He recounted how teammate and NFL Hall of Famer Junior Seau, a seasoned veteran, was one of his mentors and how devastating and unbelievable it was when Seau took his own life in 2012.

Ninkovich also discussed the need for open dialog, pointing out that while there is a lot of information available, most people who need help do not seek it. He acknowledged how important and supportive his family had been for him during his recent suspension.

Congresswoman Niki Tsongas and State Senator Jen Flanagan, both actively involved in leading the fight against these problems also addressed the gathering.

In addition to the speaking presentations, over twenty local agencies that provide diverse resources related to the suicide prevention, substance abuse and mental health awareness were available to address concerns and provide information on their services.

Chamber President & CEO Jim Bellina said “The evening’s objective was to make the business community more aware of the magnitude of the problems, the attendant signs and the resources that are there to help. I believe we achieved that objective but it is only a beginning”

Kandi Perry, Senior VP of MVP Sponsor Agera Energy said “Agera is honored to have the opportunity to take the lead in this important undertaking and it is a privilege to work for such a community minded company.”

Touchdown Sponsors included Heywood Hospital, Fidelity Bank/Shine Initiative. Field Goal Sponsors were Advanced Cable Ties and Tyco Simplex/Grinnell.  First Down Sponsors included C.M. Chartier Contracting, Elms College, GAAMHA, Inc., and Mount Wachusett Community College. Kickoff Sponsors were Athol Savings Bank, Colonial Co-operative Bank, Eastern Propane, GFA Federal Credit Union, MassMen, MedStar EMS, Pete’s Tire Barn and Unitil.

Football Fan Sponsors were the A.E.D. Foundation, Inc. and Lynde Hardware & Supply, Inc.  Press Box Sponsors included Competitive Edge Marketing & Design, Great Wolf Lodge, Pro Sports MVP, Travers Printing, Inc., The K-Zone WPKZ 1280/105.3, WGAW1340.com and WTAG News Radio 580/94.9.

A portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to suicide prevention/awareness initiatives in the greater Gardner region and Heywood Healthcare’s Quabbin Retreat, slated for opening later this year in Petersham. This innovative facility will provide outpatient, residential and inpatient services to adults and adolescents struggling with behavioral health and substance abuse problems.

New England Patriots Defensive End Rob Ninkovich to Speak at Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Awareness Event

Gardner, MA – The Greater Gardner Chamber of Commerce and MVP Sponsor AGERA Energy present a Mental Health & Suicide Prevention Awareness event featuring special guest Rob Ninkovich, New England Patriots Defensive End.

The event will be held on the evening of Tuesday, October 11, 2016 from 5:00 – 8:00 pm at Great Wolf Lodge, 50 Great Wolf Drive, Fitchburg.

A key issue facing the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and one which has hit our region especially hard, is the high rate of suicide in our population. Impacted by mental health concerns and the opioid addiction problem, the negative economic effect of this situation is considerable.

The Chamber and AGERA Energy are proud to partner together to take on the challenge of ensuring that the business community is aware of the magnitude of the problem, learns to recognize the signs and becomes familiar with the resources available.

Guest speaker Rob Ninkovich has been a key player for the New England Patriots since 2009 and has been a member of two Super Bowl teams. In his professional life, he was touched by suicide when teammate and NFL Hall of Famer, Junior Seau, took his own life in 2012.

In addition to the speaking presentation, a number of local agencies that provide diverse resources related to the suicide situation will be available to address concerns and dispense information at the venue from 4:00 – 6:00 pm.  A portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to suicide prevention/awareness initiatives in the Greater Gardner region, and Heywood Healthcare’s Quabbin Retreat, slated for opening later this year in Petersham. This innovative facility will provide outpatient, residential and inpatient services to adults and adolescents struggling with behavioral health and substance abuse problems.

Touchdown Sponsors include Heywood Hospital, Fidelity Bank/Shine Initiative. Field Goal Sponsors are Advanced Cable Ties and Tyco Simplex/Grinnell.  First Down Sponsors include C.M. Chartier Contracting, Elms College, GAAMHA, Inc., and Mount Wachusett Community College. Kickoff Sponsors are Athol Savings Bank, Colonial Co-operative Bank, Eastern Propane, GFA Federal Credit Union, MassMen, MedStar EMS, Pete’s Tire Barn and Unitil.

Football Fan Sponsors are the A.E.D. Foundation, Inc. and Lynde Hardware & Supply, Inc.  Press Box Sponsors include Competitive Edge Marketing & Design, Great Wolf Lodge, Pro Sports MVP, Travers Printing, Inc., The K-Zone WPKZ 1280/105.3, WGAW1340.com and WTAG News Radio 580/94.9.

Event tickets are $60 per person. Ticket price includes dinner. Advanced reservations are required. Tickets may be purchased online  HERE or contact the Chamber at 978-632-1780 email: info@gardnerma.com.  Tickets may also be purchased at the Chamber office, 29 Parker Street, 2nd Floor, Gardner.

 

 

Joint Business After Hours with the North Quabbin Chamber of Commerce,Sept. 20, 5-7:30 pm at Red Apple Farm.

Celebrate the Equinox at our Joint Business After Hours with the North Quabbin Chamber of Commerce, Sponsored by Red Apple Farm, King Phillip Restaurant and The Gardner Ale House.

Sept. 20, 5-7:30 pm at Red Apple Farm.

$5.00 for members, $10.00 for future members

Call us at 978-632-1780

Or you can reserve and pay online HERE

Robert Langlois Memorial Golf Tournament Results

Great Golf Ball Drop Winners

$1,000 – Sue Davan

$750 – Peter Gallant

$500 – Wayne Corliss

Bonus Prizes of $100 each –

Heidi Besse, H & H Trucking, Tim Whitaker

Robert Langlois Memorial Golf Tournament Winners:

1st Place – 53 – Service Master by Williams – Ben Appleby, Jeff Davenport, Brian Thomas, Dave Thomas

2nd Place – 60 – Mack Funeral Home – Kevin Mack, Ken Arsenault, Ric Perry, Mike Nordman

3rd Place – 61 – Venning & Jacques – Jerry Bankowski, Renay Bankowski, Joe Welch, Joanna Welch

4th Place – 61 – TD Bank – Bill Brassard, James Ciociolo, Dave Urquhart, Ben Getchell

5th Place – 61 – Gardner Police Department – John Smith, Mike Vachon, Jeff Hebert, Jeff Herold

Men’s Nearest to the Pin #6 – Bob Charland  7′ 5 ”

Women’s Nearest to the Pin #6 – Celeste Drake 4′ 11″

Nearest to the Pin #8 – James Ciociolo 3′ 3″

Nearest to the Pin #14 – Bill Brassard – 7′ 3 1/2″

Men’s Longest Drive – Kevin Mack

Women’s Longest Drive – Kristin Mattson

Putting Contest Sponsored by GFA Federal Credit Union – Nate Schroeder

Longest Putt Sponsored by Flick Law Group – Dave Kelly

Closest to the Pink Flamingo Sponsored by Lashua LaChance & Poliks Insurance Agency – Phil Clark – 15′ 9″

5 LB. Hershey Bar Sponsored by inConcert Web Solutions – Mark Dimeco

Winner of $100 worth of scratch tickets – Jim Gallant

Thank you to our sponsors Athol Savings Bank, Advanced Cable Ties, Wood’s Ambulance, Inc. TD Bank, AGERA Energy, Coleman Assembly & Packaging, Eye & Lasik Center, Fidelity Bank, GAAMHA, Inc., Gardner Discount Furniture, GFA Federal Credit Union, Heywood Hospital, Mount Wachusett Community College, TYCO/SimplexGrinnell, TYCO Fire Protection Products, WSRS FM 96, WTAG FM 94.9/AM 580, WGAW1340.com and Competitive Edge Marketing & Design, K-Zone, all our sponsors on the green & tee, event supporters including Gardner Municipal Golf Course, Polish American Citizens Club, 101 Mini Storage, Allen Tree Service, KCMC Management-Dunkin Donuts, Lyman Signs, King Phillip Restaurant, Republic Services, Taylor Rental, Boy Scout Troop 6, our volunteers, golfers and outing attendees for a fantastic day!

 

Business Community Honors Dr. Daniel M. Asquino at Three Chamber Breakfast

Asquino1

 

Visionary. Collaborative. Energetic. Dedicated. Pioneering. Inclusive. A true leader.

 

 

 

These were among the words and phrases used by area legislators, mayors and business leaders to describe retiring Mount Wachusett Community College President Daniel M. Asquino during a breakfast sponsored in his honor by three regional Chambers of Commerce.

More than 200 business and community leaders gathered June 24 in the college’s South Café to toast, and occasionally roast, the long-serving president, who has announced his plans to retire in early 2017 following three decades at the helm of the college and 47 years in Massachusetts public higher education.

“Dan’s resume is long and is far reaching, not only in North Central Massachusetts, but throughout the Commonwealth and in higher education nationwide,” said retired State Sen. Stephen M. Brewer, who served as master of ceremonies. “He is a visionary leader whose emphasis on community engagement and collaboration has left a continuing legacy.”

The president was lauded for his leadership in key areas, including championing access to higher education; K-12, business and industry and community partnerships; civic engagement; and sustainability.

State Sen. Anne Gobi and State Rep. Jon Zlotnik shared remarks on behalf of the region’s legislative delegation. Additional speakers included Gardner Mayor Mark Hawke and Leominster Mayor Dean Mazzarella, who are both alumni of the college; Fitchburg Mayor Stephen DiNatale; Raymond LaFond, senior vice president at Enterprise Bank, who spoke on behalf of the college’s Board of Trustees and Foundation Board of Directors; and Jim Bellina, president of the Greater Gardner Chamber of Commerce.

Bellina, along with Nashoba Valley Chamber of Commerce President Melissa Fetterhoff and Roy Nascimento, president of the North Central Chamber of Commerce, presented Dr. Asquino with a $1,000 donation to the MWCC Foundation for student scholarships.

“Thank you, President Asquino, for giving us leadership by example,” Bellina said.

Senator Gobi shared a story of working with determined MWCC students on a legislative bill focused on consumer protection as an example of the president’s impact on encouraging young people to become engaged citizens. “Students and the community. That’s something that President Asquino has never, ever forgotten.”

President Asquino acknowledged that there is still much to do during the remainder of his tenure, including completing construction of the college’s $42 million science and technology building and campus renovations. “My focus right now is on Mount Wachusett Community College.”

He said he is most proud of the service provided to students by the college’s faculty and staff, the college’s economic impact on the region, and leadership in academic, workforce and community endeavors.

“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve you and to achieve my dream,” President Asquino said. “I certainly will miss all of you. I’ll miss the opportunity this position has given me to give back.”

In addition to the three chambers, event sponsors included Advanced Cable Ties, Inc., Heywood HealthCare, MWCC, HeathAlliance Hospital, Heat Trace Products, Workers’ Credit Union, GFA Federal Credit Union, RCAP Solutions, Perkins, Fidelity Bank, GVNA Healthcare, Inc, Lynde Hardware & Supply, C.M. Chartier Contracting, MassDevelopment, Gervais Ford, Apple Valley Center, IC Federal Credit Union, The Shine Initiative, Enterprise Bank, Boys & Girls Club of Fitchburg and Leominster, United Way of North Central Massachusetts, Daly’s Property Shoppe, and the Gardner Redevelopment Authority.

 

2016 Super Raffle Winners

Congratulations to the 2016 Super Raffle Winners!

$10,000 Grand Prize – #193  Rick Cairns, Midas Auto System Experts

Ticket sold by Jeffrey Ashworth, Athol Savings Bank

$1,000 – #165         Anne LeBlanc and Alan LeBlanc, John’s Sport Shop, Gardner

Sold by Anne LeBlanc, John’s Sport Shop

$750 – #259           Ann Marie Gabis, Templeton

Sold by Chamber Staff

$750 – #40             Andrew Boucher, Boucher Funeral Home, Gardner

Sold by Andrew Boucher, Boucher Funeral Home

$750 – #134            The Labove Family, Charles Lobove

Sold by Ken Tomasetti, Advanced Cable Ties

$750 – #118            GVNA HealthCare Team, Gardner

Sold by Ann Racine, GVNA HealthCare, Inc.

$250 – #21              Aubuchon Hardware Team, Westminster

Sold by Jeffrey Aubuchon, Aubuchon Hardware

$250 – #142             David Huhtala and Paul Huhtala, Huhtala Oil & Propane, Templeton

Sold by Paul Huhtala, Huhtala Oil & Propane

$250 – #140             Joanne Woodcock, Orange

Sold by Chris Woodcock, TYCO/SimplexGrinnell

$250 – #310             Lam Nguyen and Johnny Boupha, Advanced Cable Ties, Gardner

Sold by Ken Tomasetti, Advanced Cable Ties

$250 – #72               Peter Gallant, Sam Gallant, Devin Williams, Brandon Williams, Gardner

Sold by James Gallant, Priscilla Candy Shop

Thank You to Our Ticket Sellers

Super Sellers

Jeffrey Ashworth, Athol Savings Bank

Ken Tomasetti, Advanced Cable Ties

Anne LeBlanc, John’s Sport Shop

Joseph G. Sova, Avidia Bank

Paul Huhtala, Huhtala Oil & Propane

Michael Budwick, Gardner Ten Pins

Jeffrey Gallant, CPA

Ken LaBrack

Andrew Boucher, Boucher Funeral Home

Dawn Casavant, Heywood Hospital

Additional Sellers

Jeffrey Aubuchon, Aubuchon Hardware

Scot Barrett, BDO USA, LLP

Jacqueline Belrose, Mount Wachusett Community College

Greg Charland, Charland Technology

Christof Chartier, C.M. Chartier Contracting

Stephen Coswell, Plantscape Services, LLC

Chris Daly, Daly’s Property Shoppe

Anthony DeSando

Celeste Drake, Lynde Hardware & Supply, Inc.

Caroline Fluet, UNITIL

Arthur Gagne, Eastern Propane & Oil

James Gallant, Priscilla Candy Shop

Sarah Galvin, Barre Savings Bank

Attorney Mark Goldstein, Law Office of Mark A. Goldstein

Ryan McGuane, Advent Financial Planners

Attorney Ann Meilus, Landry & Meilus, LLP

Kandi Perry, AGERA Energy

Ann Racine, GVNA HealthCare, Inc.

Chris Woodcock, TYCO/SimplexGrinnell

Thank you to our event sponsor Williams Restaurant