MNCPA PERSPECTIVES

The primary is over, but there’s still work to be done

August 27, 2018  |  Geno Fragnito

The primary is over, but there’s still work to be done

Where has the summer gone? It seems like just yesterday I was planning my summer vacation and wondering if Mother Nature would cooperate with my plans. Now, I look at the calendar and see the Minnesota State Fair is here again, kids are getting ready to go back to school, and the 2018 election is just around the corner.

I hope your fond memories of summer include voting in the primary election to narrow the field of candidates who will face off in the November general election. Maybe your candidate was successful in the primary, maybe not. Either way, we now know who will appear on the ballot in November. 

For those who don’t know, here’s the list of statewide races:

  Rebuplican candidate DFL candidate
Governor Jeff Johnson Tim Walz
Attorney General Doug Wardlow  Keith Ellison
Secretary of State John Howe Steve Simon
State Auditor Pam Myhra  Julie Blaha
United States Senate (1) Jim Newberger Amy Klobuchar
United States Senate (2) Karin Housley Tina Smith

You may have heard their names, but have you heard where each of these candidates stand on issues important to the CPA profession?

As you know, the 2018 vetoed tax bill created uncertainty for taxpayers and has made your role as a trusted business adviser more difficult. When the Legislature convenes in January, it will need to address taxes and federal conformity. Will the governor and legislators in office have the same priorities as you? Will they share the same sense of urgency to provide clear guidance for tax planning?

If you’re unsure which candidates will share your priorities, you have time to do some research and learn more about each of them before November. Then, after you cast your ballot and learn of the election results, don’t forget to reach out to newly elected leaders. CPAs are trusted and highly respected professionals. Your analysis and expertise could help an elected official establish their position on an issue. 

There a few ways to do this. One of the most effective ways is to invite local legislators to your office or firm and have them meet with you and your staff. Share what is important to you, your business and your clients, and ask for their support of your positions. You can also invite other local businesses and host a joint meeting with legislators.

Elected officials like to hear from constituents. If you’re not sharing your thoughts and ideas, they will make decisions based on what they know or have heard from others. Your ideas are valuable and need to be included in the conversation.

Topics: Legislative & Government Affairs

Geno Fragnito

Geno Fragnito is the MNCPA’s 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 gfragnito@mncpa.org.

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