GPNP Advocacy Training by PANO June 2011


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Joe Geiger from the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations provided an insightful advocacy training to members of the Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership at our 2011 Semi-Annual Membership Meeting.

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GPNP Advocacy Training by PANO June 2011

  1. 1. Getting to Know Your Legislator - A Collaboration between PANO & GPNP Joe Geiger , Executive Director Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations 777 East Park Drive, Suite 300 , Harrisburg, PA 17111 (717)-236-8584 Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 1June 22, 2011 Organizations
  2. 2. Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit OrganizationsQuizQ i Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 2 Organizations
  3. 3. Some general thS l thoughts ht  There is no such thing as perfect p public p y - Feudal times… policy  This is not rocket science - relationships  If you are not at the table, who is?  Sticking your head in the sand does not mean you won’t get hurt - opinion won t on NPO  Grassroots lobbying is crucial Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 3 Organizations
  4. 4. Serenity PrayerS it P God grant me the serenityto accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 4 Organizations
  5. 5. We are creating more g competition for the same dollarWe are fighting within g g the nonprofit community to y compete for whose issue is the most important – that must p stop! Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 5 Organizations
  6. 6. We need to be developing collaboration within the sector We must re-educate the public about the value of the charitable nonprofit community We do more than provide service We must understand what we have in common with each other Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 6 Organizations
  7. 7. Three Common Barriers to Involvement in Public Policy Legality – Is it legal for 501 (c )(3) organizations to advocate and lobby? Legitimacy – Is it legitimate and appropriate for nonprofits to advocate and lobby? Effectiveness – How can nonprofits advocate effectively? Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 7 Organizations
  8. 8. Three Execs in the countryside y Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 8 Organizations
  9. 9. Getting t K G tti to Know your Legislator L i l tWhen? How? What? Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 9 Organizations
  10. 10. Electioneering Charities are prohibited by law from engaging in electioneering Neither party has a monopoly on brains or ethics Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 10 Organizations
  11. 11. Penalties: 10% excise tax - organizations Individuals Loss of tax exemption Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 11 Organizations
  12. 12. Allowable Quasi-political activity:Voting RecordsQuestionnairesPublic ForumsAwards Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 12 Organizations
  13. 13. Allowable political activity:V t Registration Voter R i t tiTransportation to elections pCannot target a p g particular demographic to g p the exclusion of another Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 13 Organizations
  14. 14. Individual Political Activities: Contributions Volunteering g Letters of Support Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 14 Organizations
  15. 15. Meeting ith M ti with your l i l t legislator1. Nervous? You know more about the subject2. Advance appointment important3. A small delegation is OK – and may be better4. Discuss issue from your legislator s legislator’s perspective Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 15 Organizations
  16. 16. Meeting with your legislator (continued)5.5 Leave fact sheet6. Write - say thanks -- remind legislator of agreements reached g Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 16 Organizations
  17. 17. Making the k! M ki th ask!1. Do your research – what is the climate, philosophy, philosophy record of this elected2. Approach as precisely and succinctly as possible3. To what extent will your request cost tax payer dollars or save tax payer dollars4. Put a face on it!5. Try to make this feel like a win for the legislator6. Offer your self as a solution or problem solver7. Can t7 Can’t answer a question? Don’t bluff, but offer to Don t bluff get answer Role play exercise p y Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 17 Organizations
  18. 18. How d l i l t H do legislators make d i i k decisions? ?1. What are the convictions/philosophies of the legislator2. What campaign promises were made3.3 Where are you in the life cycle of the issue life-cycle4. What are opponents of the issue feeding the legislator5. What was the quality of your presentation of information6. What credibility status do you have with your legislator7. What were the marching orders in caucus8. What issues are the negotiable and non-negotiable g g Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 18 Organizations
  19. 19. Telephone Advocacy T l h Ad1. Telephone call can be very persuasive.  Tool for both direct and indirect advocacy2. K2 Keep it brief and to the point b i f d t th i t3. Don’t always need to speak to the legislator4. Calling legislator’s district office is as important as calling the capitol office office.  Depends on the individual legislator, or relevant staffer Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 19 Organizations
  20. 20. Telephone etiquetteT l h ti ttNever, e er e er everNe er ever, ever, e er stand in front of areceptionist that is trying to help you andget on your cell phone iPhone Blackberry phone, iPhone, Blackberry,etc.! Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 20 Organizations
  21. 21. Emails d A i AlE il and Action AlertsQ: How many advocacy emails does Congress receive per year? ?  500 million email sent to Congress in 2009  Increased 200% in 5 years, 300% over 10 yearsQ: What percentage actually get through?  Actual numbers vary from 70% - 20% CapwizXC higher than industry average Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 21 Organizations
  22. 22. Other Oth ways to communicate: t i tInvite legislator to: g a. Visit your facility b. Speak at a meeting sponsored b your group b S k t ti d by c. Meet with your board d. d Attend breakfast meeting at state capitol Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 22 Organizations
  23. 23. Charity ChallengeCh it Ch ll Recognize the importance of collaboration Set aside our differences as sub sectors sub-sectors – think as one sector Support enforcing existing laws – 100’s 100 s of cases IRS is under-funded – voluntary support of ethical behaviors Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 23 Organizations
  24. 24. PA Government OfficesPennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Campaigns Elections & LegislationWeb: (717) 787-5280, Fax (717)787-2854 787 5280 (717)787 2854Pennsylvania State Ethics Commission, Legal DivisionWeb: ra lobbydisclosure@state pa us technical questions)Phone: (717) 783-1610 or Toll Free at 1(800) 932-0936Pennsylvania Office of Attorney GeneralWeb: lobbyingdisclosure@attorneygeneral.govPhone: (717) 787-3391 Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 24 Organizations
  25. 25. Formal vs. Informal Inquiries F l I f lI iiUNOFFICIAL ANSWERS:For Answers to questions on Forms and filings, contact thePennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Campaigns Elections Stateand Legislation (the Bureau)at or (717) 787-5280.OFFICIAL ADVISORIES:For Official Advisories regarding compliance with the Act, contact thePennsylvania State Ethics Commission, Legal Division (the CommissionCommission) at, (717) 783-1610 orToll Free at 1(800) 932-0936 or go to p p p p Q Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 25 Organizations
  26. 26. For more informationContact PANO via email at or phone at (717) 236-8584PANO leads Pennsylvania’s Community Benefit Sector to achieve its fullest p f potential! Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit 26 Organizations