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American Associations Day: How to Run a Congressional Meeting 1 February 25, 2015 1:30pm ET The call-in:(605) 477-2100 Pass code: 603295#

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Presentation on theme: "American Associations Day: How to Run a Congressional Meeting 1 February 25, 2015 1:30pm ET The call-in:(605) 477-2100 Pass code: 603295#"— Presentation transcript:

1 American Associations Day: How to Run a Congressional Meeting 1 February 25, :30pm ET The call-in:(605) Pass code: #

2 Speakers Matthew D’Uva, FASAE, CAE President and CEO of the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals International Jim Clarke, CAE Senior Vice President, Public Policy ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership Mary Kate Cunningham Senior Manger, Public Policy ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership 2

3 Purpose of a Hill Visit Tell your story: connect the issue to the important work of your association Make a personal connection between your work and the Power of A message Advance legislative issues of the association community Ensure your voice heard- Members of Congress represent their constituents 3

4 What is The Power of A? The Power of A campaign is designed to show how associations are social and economic drivers One in every three Americans is a part of our nation’s vital association and nonprofit industry. Associations are the largest provider of post-college education 4

5 Where We Started The Power of A was created in 2009 as a campaign to educate the new Obama administration and Congress about associations and the expertise they lend to the policymaking process. We created ThePowerOfA.org to tell the story of how associations impact our future, fuel the economy, enrich lives and keep us competitive. 5

6 Where We Are Today The Power of A is an industry brand for all associations to talk about our community with their own audiences. It’s a platform for us to tell our own unique stories to showcase the power of our industry as a whole. 6

7 Bringing The Message Home Think about a short elevator pitch to share the ways your association contributes to the local economy and society in your state and district. 7

8 What is the PWRA Campaign? Learn more at the American Associations Day panel “Hill Meetings: Using the Power of A Message” with: – Paul Pomerantz, FASAE, CAE Chair, Power of A Committee Chief Executive Officer, American Society Of Anesthesiologists – Melanie K. Johnson Membership Program Manager American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) 2014 Summit Award: ASHA Diversity Recruitment Programs 8

9 Planning Your Hill Visit Allow at least 15 minutes between meetings on the House side and at least 30 between meetings on the Senate side Numbering system on the House Building + Floor + Room Number Example: Rayburn 2 nd floor is 2243 Example: Longworth 2 nd floor is 1243 Example: Cannon 2 nd floor is 243 (no number) Allow enough time for traffic (on Metro and the roads) 9

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11 Planning Your Hill Visit Expect to walk- the Congressional campus is large Prohibited items: – liquid, including water – Aerosol containers/ non-aerosol spray – Any bag larger than 18" wide x 14" high x 8.5" deep Cafeterias and snack shops can be found in almost all Congressional buildings. Check a map for the closest to you. 11

12 Before Your Meeting Confirm each meeting a day in advance Be prepared with the background of the Member of Congress and his/her district Know potential connections between your organization and the district or member Take a moment to consider the special angle that makes your talking points special Dress for a business meeting 12

13 Arrival Arrive 5 minutes early and check in at the Front Desk Greet the front office Staff Assistant and tell them: – your name and organization – who you are meeting with and what time Congressional staffers may look very young, yet they report to the member, so treat them with respect Don’t be shocked if the meeting space is less than ideal (i.e. a cafeteria, hallway, or “cage” Prepare for a short meeting, usually not longer than 15 minutes 13

14 Start the Meeting The staffer you are meeting with will likely run late. Do not let this fluster you. Stick to the planned talking points. Introduce each member of your group and what organization they are representing Present material and business cards at the start of the meeting 14

15 Make the Connection Emphasize if you are a constituent If you have a connection to the member, share that with the person you are meeting with (i.e. attended same college or university, shared former coworker) 15

16 Meeting Logistics Address how your association helps the district or state through services/education/ and jobs. Use personal stories in addition to facts Leave time for questions Avoid acronyms and industry jargon Thank the staffer or member if they have supported a position in the past that is related to your issue Make your “ask” clearly Offer to be a resource to the office 16

17 Mistakes to Avoid Never mention campaign contributions- this destroys your credibility and may be illegal Do not threaten not to vote for a member If the member is present or stops by your meeting, avoid becoming “star struck” Make sure not to guess at answers to questions: offer to check and then follow through with the staffer. Never lie or stretch the truth on your issue Do not convey negative feelings about politicians and Congress. Be respectful. 17

18 Breakdown of the Office Staff Assistant Legislative Correspondent (LC) Legislative Assistant (LA) Legislative Director (LD) District/State Director Scheduler Chief of Staff 18

19 After Your Meeting Send a follow up note to the staffer thanking them for the meeting and for their time Provide any additional information you may have offered to send Keep in touch with the office, either on this issue or a future issue. Make the connection into a relationship. 19

20 Policy Issues Tax Reform Drivers of comprehensive tax reform: Rising federal deficit Need to stimulate job creation and competitiveness in the global economy Need to close loopholes and promote fairness in the tax code 20

21 Policy Issues Tax Reform Lowering corporate and individual tax rates has been a focus of reform this Congress, as well as reducing deductions and credits. ASAE is concerned about potential ramifications for the association community, as it is unclear what changes will be made in order to reach the desired lower rates. The issue that is of the utmost concern to the association community is modifications to the UBIT statute. Changing the tax treatment of certain revenue-generating activities could force many associations to rethink their business models. Many associations depend on income from passive royalties to advance their tax-exempt mission. 21

22 Policy Issues Government Attendance at Meetings: Government-wide budget cuts and exorbitant spending on certain internal federal conferences have led government agencies to vastly tighten travel budgets over the past several years. In response to these issues, the Office of Management and Budget and the Administration have taken a number of aggressive steps to cut waste, including requiring all agencies to reduce conference and travel budgets for all agencies to 70 percent of FY 2010 levels and keep those reduced budgets in place through FY The Administration has also instituted a series of internal controls to tighten the approval process for travel and conference-planning. 22

23 Policy Issues Government Attendance at Meetings: ASAE understands the need for fiscal responsibility and the reduction of unnecessary spending. However, blanket restrictions that prohibit travel, either in response to isolated incidences or just in the name of prudent spending, are shortsighted. The dual goals of public-private partnership and good government can be achieved simultaneously without severing attendance at private meetings. Important dialogues take place at meetings and conferences between government employees and the private sector. This is why other technologies such as teleconferencing and video conferences can’t take the place of face-to-face communication. The ability to bring together so many knowledgeable experts at meetings and conferences held by associations is a significant resource to government employees. Oftentimes, important working relationships are formed by post- speech discussions following up on the topics presented. 23

24 Mary Kate Cunningham Senior Manager, Public Policy Manager Questions? 24


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