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NAMA CEO Carla Balakgie Featured On CEO Update's Association Newsmakers
NAMA recently announced that President and CEO Carla Balakgie is featured in a new interview from CEO Update's "Association Newsmakers."

"Association Newsmakers" is an influential interview show distributed widely amongst the highest levels of association management and related stakeholders. Balakgie joins high profile CEOs including Matthew Shay, National Retail Federation; Tim Pawlenty, Financial Services Roundtable; Dawn Sweeney, National Restaurant Association and Susan Neely, American Beverage Association, all of whom have been featured on the program.

"Carla's interview focuses on NAMA's public relations efforts to shape the image of the refreshment services industry," said Roni Moore, NAMA Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations. "Media coverage like this is an extension of our commitment to overall proactive media relations and targeted Washington, D.C. efforts, working to enhance NAMA's credentials and visibility, an important component of coalition building for our industry."

To view the full interview, please visit:
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Northwest Automatic Vending Association Hosts Washington Legislative Day
The Northwest Automatic Vending Association (NAVA) recently hosted a legislative day at the Washington State Capitol in Olympia. NAVA members met with their state senators and representatives to educate and inform them about the industry and its contributions to Washington's economy.

The legislative event focused on educating state lawmakers on the refreshment services industry. "NAVA members from Washington were able to meet with their legislators and discuss the industry and share information about their individual companies," said NAVA Legislative Consultant Brad Boswell. "NAVA members have visited Olympia annually and have worked over the years to build relationships with their representatives. This year the group had a total of 16 individual meetings with legislators and staff. Our focus was on the role our industry plays in the local economy and the number of people in the state of Washington that our members serve." Boswell concluded.

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Mid-America Automatic Merchandising Association Hosts First "Day On The Hill" At Missouri State Capitol In Jefferson City
The Mid-America Automatic Merchandising Association (MAMA) hosted its first Missouri legislative "Day on the Hill" recently at the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City.

MAMA members met at the Capitol, where they participated in meetings with key legislators including Senator Eric Schmitt, Chair of the Economic Development Committee, Representative Andrew Koenig, Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee and Senator Will Kraus, Chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

"MAMA's 2015 Missouri lobby day was a smashing success," said MAMA Missouri Legislative Consultant John Bardgett. "Numerous legislators have complimented our organization for coming to the Capitol to build relationships and educate legislators about the industry, particularly when they did not have a specific piece of legislation they were promoting or opposing. These efforts are very helpful to our role as MAMA spokespersons in the Capitol building." he concluded.

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Connecticut Rep. Rosa Delauro Once Again Introduces Legislation To Tax Sugar-Sweetened Beverages
U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Connecticut, recently reintroduced legislation to tax caloric sweeteners as a means to reduce obesity, diabetes and other health conditions. The Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax (SWEET) Act would impose a one-cent tax per teaspoon of caloric sweetener, such as sugar or high-fructose corn syrup, on beverages. Milk, including rice and soy, 100 percent fruit juice and infant formula would be exempt.
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Massachusetts: Proposal Would Ban Bottled Water At Brookline Town Events
First came plastic bags and Styrofoam, and now, the water bottle. Two Town Meeting members have filed a pair of warrant articles for the spring Town Meeting that would limit the town's spending on bottled water, as well as curtail the use and sale of bottled water at town events and on town property. Clint Richmond and Jane Gilman, the petitioners, are also the co-chairs of the Brookline Green Caucus, a group of residents interested in making the town more sustainable and environmentally friendly. "This is a consumer product that completely trashes the environment," said Gilman, talking about water bottles. Americans used 50 billion water bottles last year, according to the website Ban The Bottle, an organization that advocates for water bottle bans in schools, offices and public areas.
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Texas: House Leadership Ups The Ante On Business Tax Cuts
Texas House leaders recently said they can cut taxes by more than the $4 billion initially proposed by their Senate counterparts, upping the ante on the high-profile issue despite other looming big-ticket state needs. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, gave the assessment in an interview but didn't say how much more in cuts is being contemplated. "We really believe that we ought to be able to do more than $4 billion in tax cuts here in the House," Bonnen said. "We don't have a number at this point. We just know that we can do better than that." Asked about exceeding $4 billion in tax cuts for homeowners and businesses combined, House Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, said, "We're on the same page."
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Vermont: House Committee OKs Controversial Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Tax
The House Committee on Ways and Means recently gave approval to a new tax on soda and other sugary beverages. But while proponents of the measure say it's a key step in the confronting the nation's obesity epidemic, critics say the plan will hurt business, and target lower-income taxpayers. No legislative chamber in the country has ever approved a tax on sugary beverages. That could change next week, when the bill approved by the committee hits the House floor for a vote on legislation that includes a half-a-cent-per-ounce tax on soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages.
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