SARATOGA COUNTY -- Members of the Chamber of Southern Saratoga County voted to move forward with an affiliation with the Capital Region Chamber on Thursday.
The affiliation received 148 member votes with 87 percent in favor of the affiliation.
“Through affiliation we are embracing the region as one economic marketplace with distinctive county needs," said Matt Grattan, board chairman of the Chamber of Southern Saratoga County, in a statement released after the vote. "The Chamber of Southern Saratoga County will retain its local influence and programming, and the Capital Region Chamber will connect our members and communities to the regional economy, expanded resources, stronger advocacy and a larger business network.”
“We are excited to leverage the strengths of each chamber to provide greater influence and opportunities for our members and communities,” said Richard Sleasman, chairman of the Capital Region Chamber Board.
Integration of the chambers will occur over the coming months. The plan is to begin publicly operating as an integrated entity as of Jan. 1. The Capital Region Chamber will maintain offices in Clifton Park, Colonie and Schenectady.
The two organizations first announced in April that they were exploring the possibility of an affiliation.
The Capital Region Chamber, the largest chamber in the area, was formed as an umbrella organization in spring 2015 by the memberships of the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber and the Chamber of Schenectady County to be a unifying force for regional business interests and to provide broad-based member services across the four-county area.
The Albany-Colonie and Schenectady chambers affiliated and continue to provide local advocacy and locally focused programs.
The Clifton Park-based Chamber of Southern Saratoga County (CSSC) works with businesses spanning the southern portion of the county.
Under the affiliation, CSSC will retain autonomy and will continue to host locally-based events. However, an affiliation will allow CSSC to participate in and host larger regional programs as well.
The Capital Region Chamber did not need to hold a vote on the affiliation.