By Ray Allain
The Collier Building Industry Association (CBIA) is an organization that is comprised of every level of professional that is directly or tangentially involved in the building or developing industry. We are builders, subcontractors, designers, insurance agents, bankers, marketing firms etc. Our organization has the primary goals of advocacy, philanthropy, education and networking. We are sanctioned by and members of the Florida Home Builders Association, as well as the National Association of Homebuilders. We are involved at every level of government from local to the federal and are the conduit to the powers that affect us at every level.
The CBIA, along with the rest of the community, and country for that matter, have had a rough few years and have found the need to reinvent ourselves to a degree. This forum is part of our outreach in that process. It is important for everyone to understand how our industry functions, as well as how its health affects the community.
In spite of the reality that everyone in the community who would enjoy the benefits as a result of joining the CBIA is not a member, our advocacy, our mission and our voice affects them equally as well. We represent a substantial portion of our industry and are the only consolidated and consistent block of representatives actively engaging the issues at the point of the spear.
There have been many occasions in the past where individual members have expressed opinions or positions that have been erroneously represented as those of the industry and the goal of this essay is to distinguish the difference. While we respect the right of any member or non- member to express his/her views on any subject in any venue; it is critical for the public to understand the distinction.
We are comprised of a board of 18 elected members representing all areas of the industry. We meet monthly and discuss the issues at hand and form succinct and specific positions through careful debate and communication with the respective areas. In between those monthly meetings there are numbers of councils and task forces that engage the County, City and State, on issues regarding zoning, permitting, regulation, code enforcement, impact fees and a host of other issues that affect the community- at- large, and by default our industry. It is the responsibility of our industry to look after the interests of the constituents of our community as well as our members which is the best way to protect our industry and provide for quality construction within our community.
The CBIA is interested in maintaining the continuity of our community, and increasing the efficacy of the processes and regulations that govern both. We look forward to developing this relationship with the community and our industry to foster a better environment for our businesses and the community, because neither of us can exist without the other.
We are currently redesigning our Website for a launch date of March 1, 2013. The goal is to make it much more interactive with current and updated information regarding the issues we are working on, the results from the agencies involved, the findings and resolutions of the actions and the dissemination of these actions to the public. It will also provide a comprehensive calendar of events which we hope would encourage more of the public as well as the industry to become engaged in and make their voices heard.
Thanks for the opportunity to explain who we are at CBIA and what we do at CBIA. We look forward to hearing from you in the future.