Decisions made in Washington , D.C. , are increasingly affecting the built environment. Whether it is the newly announced Better Buildings Initiative energy efficiency, tax incentives for green technologies or the possible implementation of a carbon cap and trade system, now more than ever, the facility management profession needs to make its voice heard in Washington D.C. Be part of the solution at IFMA’s Annual Advocacy Day.
Soon after Advocacy Day 2010 was over, those who participated were notified that the Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act of 2010 had passed through the house and senate and was headed to President Obama’s desk. Chapter leaders played an important role in educating Congress and their staff about the bill’s importance. Here is what one chapter leader had to say: “This victory really makes our recent IFMA advocacy experience really come alive-looking forward to keeping the momentum going for the profession!”
This year’s advocacy day will take place on Sept. 20-21, and will be combined with IFMA’s Public Policy Forum held in conjunction with our partners at the Federal Facilities Council. It is regularly said in Washington that if you are not at the table, you are on the menu – meaning if you are not part of the conversation, you or your business could be affected. IFMA continually monitors developments in D.C., but in order to further magnify the importance of the FM professional, we need to engage our most effective resource – the experience and expertise of IFMA’s membership.
This meeting has become an important forum for agency, congressional and industry leaders to exchange ideas and best practices regarding the future of our nation’s built environment and the integrated demands on our infrastructure. We certainly hope you are able to participate.
This year we are again asking our chapters to send representatives to Washington , D.C. , and engage with their members of Congress during the Advocacy Day and Public Policy Forum. IFMA will provide an educational session the afternoon of September 20 that will provide an overview of the association’s government affairs program, how to articulate our positions on certain issues and most importantly, what to expect in a meeting with a member of Congress or their staff. You need not have any prior advocacy experience in order to participate. All you need is a passion for FM and a willingness to roll up your sleeves and say, “What can I do to help the profession.”
The Atlanta Chapter had a representative last year and would love to hear from Chapter members who might be flexible enough to plan work in Washington around this event to reduce costs to the Chapter. If you are interested in attending, please contact me to get on the list.
For those who participated in last year’s forum, we hope you will consider participating again this year so you can share your experience, learn about developments, continue to build relationships with your member of Congress and perhaps even lead a group of first time IFMA advocates around the hill.