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SAF’s Congressional Action Days are March 12-13

The Society of American Florists invites you to lobby and share your business stories during its 38th Annual Congressional Action Days March 12-13 in Washington, D.C., and “every voice counts when it comes to persuading legislators to consider the industry’s concerns,” according to a news release.

CAD-17Members of the floral industry at the Society of American Florists’ 2017 Congressional Action Days lobbied and shared their business stories with legislators on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.Last year, less than four months after florists asked their representatives to allot $250,000 to the Floriculture and Nursery Research Initiative, the House Appropriations Committee wrote a recommendation doubling that amount.

Additionally, members’ warnings that a proposed border adjustment tax would cause the price of flowers to spike and devastate retailers brought it to a halt. And their efforts renewed the call for comprehensive immigration reform.

“As an immigrant and small business owner, it’s a powerful opportunity to take your suit out of the closet, pack your bag, fly to D.C. and walk the halls of Congress with your peers, discussing what impacts the floral industry,” said SAF chairman Martin Meskers, in the release. He has been a long-time participant and has built many relationships with congressmen, senators and their staff over the years, inviting them to his greenhouses in Aurora, OR, for tours and fundraisers.

Hearing political commentary from a host of Washington insiders is another part of the CAD experience. This year, participants will hear a “point/counterpoint” discussion featuring Jim Richards and Todd Webster, two strategists on opposite ends of the political spectrum. They will share insights into how Washington works and how CAD participants can put the floral industry’s priorities “front and center” on Capitol Hill during the Kick-Off Breakfast on March 12.

“I always look forward to the information that the speakers provide prior to our Hill visits with our congressmen and senators,” said Marvin N. Miller, Ph.D., of the Ball Horticultural Co. in West Chicago and chairman of the SAF Government Joint Council, in a news release. “The speakers usually provide a personal perspective on what lawmakers are faced with and what they may be thinking. This often helps prepare us for the visits and certainly adds another dimension to what CAD is all about.”

The cut-off date for guaranteeing the SAF room rate at the CAD hotel is Feb. 16. The early-bird registration fee is $295 for members and $395 for non-members by Feb. 23. Your registration includes an additional free registration for a second person from your company who has never attended CAD before.

For more information, visit www.safnow.org/congressional-action-days.