From: NoReply@neii.org
To: David Lifferth,
Subject: 'The Insider' from NEII - So What is Government Affairs?
Date: Wed Jan 29 02:02:29 MST 2014
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National Elevator Industry, Inc.
 January 28, 2014
 

The National Elevator Industry, Inc. (NEII®) focused a significant amount of time and resources in 2013 on its Government Affairs program and is gearing up for another active year in 2014. But what does “Government Affairs” really mean?  Government Affairs is really just a fancy term used to encompass all of NEII’s efforts related to the policies and procedures governing the building transportation industry. The term may be simple, but the work is quite complex.
 
NEII’s primary objective remains consistent from year to year – ensuring that the laws impacting our industry across the country are fair, appropriate and reasonable in assuring the safety of the riding public and our employees. To accomplish this goal, NEII utilizes a wide array of strategies, often working simultaneously on a variety of issues in numerous jurisdictions. Read on as we take a look back at NEII’s efforts throughout the four key stages of the policy-development process, our accomplishments in 2013 and our objectives in the year ahead.
 
NEII’s Role Throughout the Process
 
Development
This stage in the regulatory process includes formulating model safety codes and standards; composing state legislation; and, drafting implementation rules. NEII staff and member company representatives participate on various American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) A17 code committees, which develop the content of consensus safety codes and standards related to building transportation. NEII staff and member company representatives also meet with legislators and agency personnel to provide technical expertise and assistance drafting bills, legislative amendments and/or policies impacting our industry.
 
Adoption
Codes, standards and other policies must be adopted through legislation or regulations by the appropriate governing body before they can be applied to our industry. NEII staff and member company representatives regularly testify before legislative committees, Elevator Boards and regulatory hearings in order to secure passage, modification or defeat of proposals that could impact the building transportation industry. In addition, NEII engages lobbyists in key jurisdictions to assist in our efforts as needed.  
 
Implementation
Once legislation is adopted, the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) must develop regulations that outline the processes, procedures and other requirements that our industry must follow.  (Note: Regulatory proposals can also be put forth under existing authority to update legislation already in place.)  NEII staff, member company representatives and our lobbyists work with regulatory agencies and others to draft these detailed requirements. We submit technical comments, cost analyses and other information to help ensure that the regulations are appropriate for the industry’s personnel, practices and equipment. In some cases, NEII also testifies at public hearings held to discuss aspects of the rules under development.
 
Enforcement
The fourth broad area of focus for NEII’s Government Affairs team is working with the AHJs and designated agencies to ensure that the codes, standards, legislation and regulations are properly enforced. We work with the regulatory authorities across the country to ensure that jurisdictional oversight is appropriate, clear and consistent. We also meet with program managers and other key agency personnel to provide technical assistance and feedback from the field to assist in enforcement activities.
 
 Reflecting on 2013
In 2013, NEII followed legislation, regulations and code updates in 43 states, as well as New York City, Denver, Los Angeles and Washington, DC. We monitored proposals, provided written comments and met with legislators and regulators as needed. We supported passage of proposals that increased the safety of the riding public and employees in numerous states, and successfully lobbied against several proposals that would have been problematic. Most notably, NEII and its team worked with the New York City Council and Department of Buildings to secure passage of updates to the elevator and escalator safety codes that included the extension of a critical compliance timeline and a requirement for the inspection report to be provided on the day of the inspection. Mayor Bloomberg is pictured signing the bill we helped develop.
 
The Year Ahead
As we look to 2014, NEII will continue to work with AHJs as they consider updating their codes. In addition, we will engage on legislation and regulatory efforts that impact our industry in key areas such as code updates, licensing requirements, establishing Elevator Boards, improving inspection programs and other critical issues.
 
If you are interested in learning more or supporting NEII’s regulatory efforts, please feel free to contact Amy Blankenbiller, NEII Government Affairs Director, at 785-286-7599 or ajblankenbiller@neii.org or Brian Black, NEII Codes and Safety Director at 585-302-0813 or bdblack@neii.org  for assistance. NEII has members and staff who are available when elevator industry issues arise within your state. We can help draft legislation, provide technical code support and/or meet with policymakers and other interested parties to discuss how best to address questions or concerns.
 


NEII® makes no warranty or representation as to the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. Neither NEII, nor its directors, officers, employees, or agents shall be responsible for the content or use of the information herein. To the fullest extent permitted by law, NEII disclaims all warranties express, implied, or statutory including but not limited to any warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement.
 
 
National Elevator Industry, Inc.
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