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Summertime is the Perfect Time to Communicate with Your Elected Officials!

This summer while you are enjoying town parades and county fairs, remember that this is also a perfect time to communicate with your elected...
July 1, 2005

By Kellie Bray
Senior Director of Political Affairs
PIA National

This summer while you are enjoying town parades and county fairs, remember that this is also a perfect time to communicate with your elected officials.  Many Members of Congress return home over the summer holidays and August recess to spend time in their district and state meeting with constituents.  Make sure that they hear from you!

Each member of the House of Representatives and U.S. Senate has offices not only in Washington, D.C., but also back in their home district and state.  Contact your elected official's office to find out the schedule of events for the summer. Also take this time to plan a one-on-one meeting to introduce yourself and talk about issues that are important to you as a professional insurance agent.  Meeting with constituents is the best way for Members of Congress to learn more about our issues and identify with PIA members.

As you prepare for these meetings, go to the Hot Issues section of PIA National's website. Here you will find PIA National position papers and background information on the top legislative issues.  Print out these position papers to leave with the Member of Congress following your visit.  This will serve as a useful reference tool for them and their staff.

What if you cannot schedule a meeting with your Member of Congress in the district?  Well, PIA National has just launched a great new online grassroots program that makes communicating with your elected official as easy as a click of the button!  Periodically, as timely issues arise, you will receive a Grassroots Alert from PIA National via email.  These alerts contain pre-written messages that you can customize and send on to your Members of Congress by email or by printing out on your letterhead and faxing to the congressional office.

Recently, a grassroots alert was sent to PIA members regarding regulations on fax communications. Written messages were developed for both the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Members of Congress.  In the letter addressed to the FCC Chairman, PIA members encouraged the commission to pass a six-month extension on the fax ban regulations set to go into effect on July 1, so that Congress would have time to pass legislation.  In the letter to Members of Congress, PIA members showed support for Senate bill S. 714 and encouraged Congress to act on this bill before the end of the year. [Editor's note: This alert has been removed from the Grassroots Action Center because the effort was successful. Read about it here.]

To visit PIA National's Grassroots Action Center, just click on the Grassroots button on the left side of the page or click here.

It is important that Members of Congress hear from you, the business leaders in your community.  So enjoy the summer and spread the word about PIA!

PIA National sends occasional Grassroots Alerts to members via email. If you don't think we have your email address, please take a moment now to send it to addresschange@pianet.org and reference your PIA National member ID number which can be found above your name on the mailing label of this publication.

Kellie Bray kelliebr@pianet.org is Senior Director of Political Affairs for PIA National.

PIA Connection

This article originally appeared in the June 2005 PIA Connection.