Executive leadership of New Hope’s two main business groups confirmed Wednesday that they have discussed a potential merger of their organizations, and will bring a proposal to their respective directors next week.
Jim Jolly, president of the New Hope Chamber of Commerce said, “We have talked to the New Hope Business Alliance about ways we can work more closely to bring more visitors to New Hope, but I can’t provide greater detail until our board of directors has had a chance to review and discuss potential decisions.”
Said Herb Millman, head of the New Hope Business Alliance, “Our group initially came together about a year ago while the New Hope Chamber was reorganizing itself, and we took on responsibility for the annual Christmas tree lighting at the Logan Inn, and holding other pro-business events. In my opinion, now that the New Hope Chamber of Commerce is back on its feet, it doesn’t make sense to maintain two separate groups with the same goal — making New Hope an even better place to live, visit and run a business.”
The New Hope business Alliance was formed as a result of an open merchant forum held in October 2014. In November 2014, New Hope business owners George Fernandez and Greg Gauthier announced they would lead an effort to stage New Hope’s annual Christmas tree lighting as part of the the newly-formed New Hope Business Alliance. The New Hope Chamber of Commerce was on a self-described “hiatus” at the time.
The Alliance went on to successfully host the tree lighting, along with several smaller holiday events. In March 2015, the group held open elections for executive office, as did the New Hope Chamber.
The New Hope Business Alliance is scheduled to hold a meeting of its board of directors on Monday, Oct. 12, and the New Hope Chamber of Commerce board will meet on Oct. 13.