FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- How do I know if I need a lobbyist?
- What does a lobbyist do?
- My Company has a problem but we don't know the best solution or strategy. Can HF Consulting help us decide on the best solution and develop a strategy to overcome this problem?
- We need a firm that can be our "eyes and ears" in the Virginia Legislature to let us know what is happening and can anticipate what will happen before it does. Can HF Consulting be that firm?
- Our Company is getting requests for campaign contributions, but we are not sure if we are giving wisely or effectively. Can HF Consulting advise us on this?
- Are there reporting requirements involving the hiring of a lobbying firm?
- What do lobbying services cost?
- How do you measure the success of a lobbyist?
- How do you compare lobbying firms?
Q: How do I know if I need a lobbyist?
A. Lobbying is any communications made on behalf of a client to members of the General Assembly, staff or state agencies regarding the formulation, modification or adoption of legislation. Companies and/or organizations hire lobbyists when they want legislation to be brought forward or revised. Lobbyists are also engaged to look out for, monitor and report on a company's best interest. Some companies also hire lobbyists to raise the profile of the company among decision makers. Lobbyists have specialized knowledge about how decisions get made in the legislature and how to favorably influence them.
Q: What does a lobbyist do?
A. A lobbyist is a person hired directly by an organization or through a firm to influence legislative and regulatory actions on behalf of his/her client. A lobbyist takes information an organization wishes to present and interprets it in a way that is understood in the political landscape. A lobbyist removes the barriers between clients and top level officials by meetings with policy makers, elected officials and other decision makers elevating the scope of your profile and interests. A lobbyist creates strategies, drafts and reviews bills, monitors legislative and regulatory/agency developments in the client's area of interest and builds a positive perception of the client throughout the Commonwealth.
Q: My Company has a problem but we don't know the best solution or strategy. Can HF Consulting help us decide on the best solution and develop a strategy to overcome this problem?
A. Of course. One of the most important services a consulting firm can offer a client is to assist in the development and implementation of a strategy or plan to resolve potential or current problems and issues. Lobbyists describe potential options, possible risks and rewards and recommend the best solution for success. Lobbyists are renowned for their ability to mediate the state of affairs between a client and those defining how decisions are being made; therefore they are trained at finding the best possible resolution for you.
Q: We need a firm that can be our "eyes and ears" in the Virginia Legislature to let us know what is happening and can anticipate what will happen before it does. Can HF Consulting be that firm?
A. Yes, HF Consulting will intensely monitor legislative proceedings and the work of study committees to ensure client interests are protected when important decisions are being made. Our team will identify any piece of legislation that is presented to the General Assembly to ensure that we identify any that affect our clients.
Q: Our Company is getting requests for campaign contributions, but we are not sure if we are giving wisely or effectively. Can HF Consulting advise us on this?
A. Political contributions can be a part of effective legislative strategies. HF Consulting is able to advise our clients in the most effective ways to contribute to various legislative bodies. We also encourage alternative contributions such as independent expenditure committees to simply volunteering your time.
Q: Are there reporting requirements involving the hiring of a lobbying firm?
A. Yes, organizations must disclose the issues lobbied during a specific time period, including specific bills and regulations, the names of lobbyists employed by the client, and cost associated with direct lobbying.
Q: What do lobbying services cost?
A. Lobbying fees are determined based on services rendered. Members of HF Consulting will work closely with each client to determine individual goals in order to develop a comprehensive strategic plan that will most effectively suit your business needs. Given that client objectives vary, we will try to develop a work plan that will fit within your individual budget.
Q: How do you measure the success of a lobbyist?
A. Success is defined by the individual client. A lobbyist's job is to achieve the goals established by the individual client. If those goals have been accomplished, then the lobbying firm has met the client's needs and expectations.
Q: How do you compare lobbying firms?
A: The best way to compare lobbying firms is to ask questions. First, compile a list of your needs in the legislative arena and the qualities you are looking for in a lobbyist. For instance, does the firm have the personnel and resources to handle your needs? Are they able to take on new clients? Do they have the contacts you want? Do they have expertise in the committees you care about? What is the primary focus of their practice? Do you want a small firm or a large firm?