Thursday, November 15, 2018

FCC Tells Lobbyists to Just Say What Their Corporate Clients Want

Stockdale

The Federal Communications Commission wants the scores of lobbyists that visit with agency staffers regularly to get to the point of exactly what they want the FCC to do on behalf of their corporate clients instead of delivering long-winded presentations that often run overtime and cause lobbyists to back up at FCC headquarters.

FCC Bureau Chief Donald Stockdale sent that clear message at a Federal Communications Bar Association event on Wednesday, telling attendees that too many lobbyists are burying the FCC staff in jargon and long, confusing presentations that explain the client’s business but do not clearly state what their client expects of the FCC. He wants lobbyists to plainly state their client’s desired policy goals within the first 2-3 minutes of a meeting with agency staffers.

Stockdale also complained too many lobbyists are overrunning their assigned 30-minute time slots, creating problems for everyone. He noted a recent presentation where a lobbyist spent 30 minutes discussing his corporate client’s business model, but only revealed the true reason he was there — to lobby for policy changes — at the end of the meeting after time ran out.

To assist the FCC in the era of the Trump Administration, the Commission’s staff advised lobbyists to create a simple-to-follow guide showing the FCC exactly what steps should be taken to achieve the corporate client’s policy goal. Currently, many lobbyists only specify a goal and do not include a roadmap showing the Commission how to meet those goals.

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