From IASB -
IASB recently joined with 2,100 other organizations in a "sign-on" letter that was delivered to the US Congress last week by ASAE. The letter urged Congress to revise legislative language attached to separate bills in both chambers that severely restricted government employees from attending meetings and conferences held by associations, nonprofits and other private sector organizations.
Additionally, the Obama Administration has issued a directive to federal agencies to cut their travel budgets for fiscal year 2013 by 30 percent and cap spending on government-sponsored conferences at $500,000. These new restrictions apply only to government travel and conference spending, and do not have the broader implications for association and other private sector meetings that were evident in the amendments cleared by the House and Senate just prior to the last Congressional recess.
The industry continues to make progress in educating Congress about the unintentionally broad scope of these travel restrictions, but the issue remains unpredictable on Capitol Hill - we need your help in adding the Speaker Bureau and Lecture Agency Industry voice to these advocacy efforts.
What You Can Do to Help:
To protect this dialogue and prevent any unintended consequences for association and other non-governmental conferences, use ASAE's web template to send a personalized message to your members of Congress asking them to support the following specific changes to the amendments that passed the House and Senate, and ask your employees, clients and speakers to do the same.
Change the definition of a conference to apply only to government-sponsored meetings as intended, and not include meetings and conferences held by associations and other private sector organizations.
Strike the provision in the amendment that restricts agencies from attending more than one conference held by a private organization per fiscal year.
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[information from IASB: www.iasbweb.org]