Letter from PAAT President & General Counsel Tom Forbes
I am writing to invite you to join the Professional Advocacy Association of Texas (PAAT) – Texas’ only statewide organization for the lobby community. Since its inception 15 years ago, PAAT has become a strong organization known for representing the interests of the Texas government affairs community and promoting ethical practice and public access to the legislative and administrative process.
PAAT members are well-respected lobbyists and corporate and association government affairs executives, attorneys and consultants. Membership in PAAT is a public statement of one’s commitment to the public interest, transparency in government advocacy, and high ethical standards.
PAAT’s mission includes:
- Protecting the public interest to petition the government;
- Promoting government affairs advocacy as a professional practice;
- Supporting open, transparent and ethical practice of government advocacy;
- Representing the interests of government advocacy and PAAT members at the Texas Legislature;
- Representing the interests of PAAT members and the lobby practice at the Texas Ethics Commission;
- Providing a clear understanding of the ethics laws and rules in Texas; and
- Hosting events and professional education opportunities for PAAT members.
In addition to regular ethics and advocacy advice and consultation, over the past 15 years PAAT has managed ten annual Ethics Compliance Institutes, hosted regular roundtable events, and defended against legislation and Ethics Commission advisory opinions that would have had a negative impact on our profession. We have also supported numerous laws that positively impact our practices, including:
- Obtained rule changes to allow expedited access to the Capitol;
- Supported legislation to allow registrants to make corrections to lobby reports without penalty; and
- Defended against an excessive increase in the lobby registration fee.
Over the years PAAT has also worked hard to address lobby-related issues with the media and other stakeholders to ensure our positions and interests have been represented accurately. Through it all, PAAT is there, representing your interests, protecting your rights and keeping you informed. We are attending the meetings, reading the fine print and standing up publicly to advocate the importance of our right to petition the government.
With a PAAT membership you make the strongest possible statement about your commitment to ethical practice, the public’s access to its government and effective oversight. And, PAAT would value having your experience, reputation and perspective.
I appreciate your consideration and hope you will support our work. Learn more at www.paat.org/join.
President & General Counsel
P.S. If you would like to discuss this I would be happy to do that. My cell is 512-426-1571 and my e-mail is [email protected]