Engage, contribute to the policy discussion and support the profession
April 3, 2018 | Geno Fragnito
Work, children, grandchildren, church, hobbies, volunteering -- so many things competing for the precious, limited time we have. Yet, many people continue giving time and talent to support causes they believe in.
Collectively supporting the profession is another item to consider on the list of things to which you can give your time and talents.
Shaping public policy isn’t something most people think about when they wake up in the morning, but there are many opportunities for the public to affect public policy. Opportunities exist for everyone, but some opportunities exist because of specialized knowledge. CPAs fit into both categories -- you bring life experience and a unique perspective that comes from years of specialized education and training.
Federal tax reform has created a once-in-a-generation opportunity for CPAs to share insight gained from professional training and experience. Businesses and clients expect CPAs to provide guidance as they try to understand what tax reform means. You may not have all the answers now, but you have the resources to find them. Have you thought about extending your professional network by contacting your legislators to help them understand how their decisions will affect taxpayers?
On March 7, MNCPA members from across Minnesota gathered at the Capitol to discuss tax reform and strengthen their professional networks by meeting with policymakers and other CPAs. They helped educate legislators, provided meaningful local insight on the issues and presented a unified message from the profession. Hearing a consistent message from constituents is an effective way to influence the conversation.
Spending a day at the Capitol might not be for everyone. If you couldn’t attend CPA Day at the Capitol this year, there are other opportunities for you to engage. Some require very little time or effort, while others require more. But, all can help grow and strengthen the profession and your professional network.
Examples of involvement include:
- Connect with your legislator by sending an email, making a phone call or reaching out through social media.
- Meet with our legislator in your district.
- Meet with your legislator at the Capitol.
- Attend a townhall meeting.
- Host a meeting with a legislator at your business or office.
- Serve as a campaign treasurer.
- Run for public office.
It is often stated that government should run more like a business. You might agree or disagree with this statement, but every CPA will agree the best decisions are made with a full set of facts. Your involvement at any level is important in shaping the result. It may seem daunting, but who better to provide guidance than an expert -- a CPA.
Topics: Legislative & Government Affairs
Geno Fragnito is the MNCPA government relations director, advocating on behalf of the CPA profession. His days consist of last-minute meeting changes, building relationships with lawmakers, helping CPAs navigate state government, and putting in more than 15,000 steps per day walking the halls of the Capitol. Geno unwinds with a little golf and traveling with his family. If he weren’t a lobbyist, Geno would perfect his cast and be a professional fisherman. Geno can be reached at 952-885-5550 or email@example.com.
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