Are you interested in joining the LAC?

Jun 11, 2014

The Delegates to Pennsylvania’s Legislative Action Committee (LAC) develop CAI’s state legislative agenda. LAC Delegates are CAI members who are appointed to serve a two-year term. Many of you who may read this monthly blog may wonder about who the members of the LAC are. You may even ask yourself, how did they become LAC delegates? Are they some kind of super-professionals with an uncanny ability to understand the laws that may affect community associations? You may further contemplate joining the LAC and ask yourself, how do I join their ranks? Can I join their ranks? Or should I join their ranks?

Delegates of the LAC are everyday professionals, just like you and I, that have made a commitment to advocate for CAI’s interests in Harrisburg and Washington; serve as liaisons to keep our membership informed; and assist in raising funds to further the efforts of the LAC. If you are interested in that commitment you may be able to join our ranks. LAC Delegates are not just attorneys, as many may think. They represent many areas of CAIs membership and include homeowners, business partners, association board members, and, of course, community managers. The LAC seeks to assure geographical representation among the delegates, with members coming from the Poconos, Delaware Valley, Central Pennsylvania, Western Pennsylvania, and in my case, Philadelphia. It has been my extreme privilege to serve on the LAC this last year and I am writing this post to interest you in joining the LAC if you have the same desire.

I was asked to write about how some of our current members found themselves on the LAC. I first interviewed Dave Martin a manager for a large community in Bushkill, PA. When a public utility planned to run power lines through his community, Dave found himself in the middle of a political battle. His community was able to organize and recruit both of PA’s U.S. Senators to its cause. In the aftermath of this, Dave joined the LAC because he wanted to “be there in the midst of it” and have advance notice of legislation before it impacted the industry. LAC Delegate Ed McFalls, a builder, told me that he joined the LAC well before it developed the awareness it has today. Like most LAC Delegates, he wanted to stay on top of the issues in Harrisburg that affect our industry, prevent over regulation, and work toward municipal service reimbursements. After meeting with chapter leadership, he was recruited to join the LAC because of his commitment to those ideas.

There are many reasons one develops an interest in becoming a LAC member. Some like Dave Martin find it a natural progression and some like Ed McFalls are recruited or, in my case, I just begged to join the LAC. I wanted to be on the LAC since the first time I read the Uniform Condominium Act and thought that there were changes that could be made for more effective governance. Today, I feel it is one of the most amazing places that a veteran community manager can contribute to our industry. One of the most interesting parts of serving on the LAC is attending our legislative days in Harrisburg. Here LAC Delegates meet with our legislators and discuss issues important to community associations and present position papers on relevant pieces of legislation that we have developed in concert with our lobbyist. I was awestruck the first time I pitched CAI’s position to a lawmaker, because I had wanted to be there for a long time.

If you feel a strong commitment to make Pennsylvania a better place to live in a community association, would like to advocate issues on behalf of CAI, and want the thrill of participating in policy making; consider submitting your name for consideration as a LAC Delegate. Nominations for the next term are due to the chapter office no later than September 1, 2014. Email Tony Campisi at the chapter office for more information on nominating yourself to the LAC.

Timothy J. Snowden, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, is a PA LAC Delegate and serves as Executive Director Philadelphia High Rise Operations for FirstService Residential.


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