(CHICAGO) March 13, 2015 – The Iowa Automatic Merchandising Association (IAMA) recently hosted a legislative day at the Iowa State Capitol in Des Moines. The event was held in conjunction with the IAMA annual meeting.
The legislative day was coordinated by Steve Roberts, IAMA’s Legislative Consultant. A dozen IAMA members hosted a breakfast for legislators where they were able to speak with their lawmakers about the vending and refreshment services industry. NAMA’s Sr. Director and Counsel Sandy Larson was also in attendance.
The association set up a micro market prototype to introduce the concept to lawmakers, demonstrate how it works and educate them on this growing segment of the industry. A key focus of the group’s message was the ability to provide better-for-you products through the micro market channel. The group also provided legislators with snack samples and information on NAMA’s FitPick program and the association.
“The Legislative Day was an excellent opportunity for IAMA members to interact with their legislators and educate them on our industry with an emphasis on micro markets,” Larson said. “This is the second year that IAMA has had a legislative event and our members did a wonderful job demonstrating the positive impact that the vending and refreshment services industry has in the state of Iowa.”
IAMA President Darnell Huppert said he was pleased with the outcome of the event. “Our Legislative day was a huge success for IAMA and the vending and refreshment services industry in Iowa,” Huppert said. “The event was very well received by our legislators, who were particularly interested in the micro market concept, especially the fresh items that are available. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet with our representatives in person and to educate them about our industry. We were able to discuss issues that are pending in the legislature and ask for their consideration of our position,” Huppert concluded.
IAMA held its annual meeting at the Des Moines Marriott Downtown hotel. For the second year in a row Rodney Roberts, Director of the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, and Mark Speltz, the Training Specialist for the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals Food and Consumer Safety Bureau joined the group for dinner. Discussion focused on pending legislation to increase health permit fees for vending machines. The association expressed their concerns to Director Roberts and the impact the increases would have on Iowa operators.
“We have developed a good working relationship with Director Roberts and his department,” said Rod Nester IAMA and NAMA Board member. “The Director has worked with us over the last year on micro markets and contacted us for our input on the new fee proposal, and we appreciate him coming to this meeting.”