In large part, Chamber of Commerce members are small businesses - most having less than 10 employees.
One of the biggest obstacles they face is finding affordable health insurance for their workers. Recently, the executive directors of all four Hendricks County Chambers worked together to offer a solution.
They've announced a partnership with ADVANTAGE Health Solutions, Inc., to offer group health insurance to chamber members in Avon, Brownsburg, Danville, and Plainfield.
"We wanted to have another benefit to offer to our members," said Marcia Lynch, Danville's chamber director. "Health insurance is such a difficult thing for small business owners to get. Most group policies are designed for large groups. We wanted to find a solution for our small business members."
Brad DuBois, Plainfield chamber director, broached the subject when he took over the position earlier this year. The county chambers used to offer a health insurance plan, but it fell by the wayside some five years ago.
"I was surprised we didn't have any sort of health insurance program to offer our membership," DuBois said.
He did some digging and found that chambers of commerce in Boone, Hamilton, and Johnson counties were using ADVANTAGE.
"They were happy with the results," DuBois said. "It doesn't fit for everyone, but it is a good fit for several. At least it's an offering for our membership."
The insurance program includes coverage for dental, life, disability, accident, cancer, and critical illness through Lincoln Financial Group and Colonial Life. Specialty products also are available on a contributory or voluntary basis.
Chamber members get a 5 percent discounted rate. The insurance is available to businesses with as few as two employees, but they must receive W-2 forms to qualify and can't be a married couple.
Interested members may contact their chamber director for more information. Lynch says she's already heard from several companies that are interested. She's not concerned about the potential future upheaval to the country's health care industry.
"These insurance companies are going to have to comply with the new legislation one way or the other," Lynch said. "I just know this is an option that the membership has been asking for."