Lobbying RFP Issued By City of Gaithersburg

2020-11-24 by JamesD

The City wishes to enter into a professional services contract with a qualified firm to represent the City’s legislative policy interests with the Maryland General Assembly and with individual State officials during the 2019 through 2022 Legislative Sessions with a primary focus on the City’s legislative priorities approved by the Mayor and City Council. The Services include scheduled, extended or special legislative sessions and meetings, committee hearings, meetings, or rule making proceedings.

The City is seeking sealed Proposals to hire an experienced and qualified firm to represent the City’s legislative policy interests with the Maryland General Assembly and with individual State officials for the 2019 through 2022 Legislative Sessions.

Background:

A. Gaithersburg is among the largest cities in the State of Maryland, with a population in excess of 67,000, occupying more than 10 square miles within Montgomery County. The City provides many services including police protection, licensing and permitting, building inspections, recreation and cultural activities, street maintenance, recycling collection, stormwater management, housing and community development, and snow removal.

B. The City operates under the council-manager form of municipal government, with the City Manager being appointed by the City Council. The Mayor and City Council are elected to staggered four-year terms; the Mayor serves as Council President. Gaithersburg became a CHARACTER COUNTS! City in 1996. This national ethics education program is based on six pillars of character that people of all cultures, races and religious affiliations can embrace. The pillars include respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, trustworthiness and citizenship

Scope of Work:

A. The Contractor shall provide the Services at the State level to assist the City in pursuing its legislative agenda and securing funding. This agenda will include areas of general municipal government, including but not limited to: transportation, state funding, bond bills and other issues affecting the City. 

B. The Mayor and City Council will formally approve Legislative Agendas in mid-October of the immediately preceding calendar year. Staff is recommending the following priorities be included in the 2019 agenda:

Ê Oppose efforts by the telecommunications industry to preempt local authority

Ê Funding Request for New Police Station

Ê Maintain Allocation of Highway User Revenue for Municipalities

Ê Legislation Requiring State and County to pay applicable stormwater utility fee

Ê Amend Hotel/Motel Tax law to remove “10 or fewer sleeping rooms” exception

C. The successful firm must agree to be available to meet upon request with appropriate City staff in order to perform the responsibilities assigned; and to attend meetings, represent the interest of the City, and act as an advocate for the City. It is expected that the successful firm will review and understand the agendas of the House and Senate leaders at the State in order to assist the City to strategically seek funding and pursue the City’s legislative priorities.

D. The successful firm will work collaboratively with key City staff to develop and pursue an aggressive legislative agenda as well as represent the City’s interests in Annapolis, Maryland.

E. The successful firm will handle a range of activities including, but not limited to:

(1) Work closely with key staff to pursue and develop the City’s Legislative Agenda.

(2) Status updates to be presented to key staff for distribution to the Mayor and City Council and City Manager.

(3) Assist the City with preparation of State Bond Bill appropriation requests for the City’s identified projects.

(4) Review on a continuing basis all existing and proposed State policies, programs, and legislation. Identify those issues that may affect the City or its residents and regularly inform the City on these matters. Provide legal and legislative expertise and consulting service. 

(5) Identify state legislation of interest to the City, monitor action on these initiatives, and advocate the City’s interests when appropriate.

(6) Monitor legislative committee meetings and hearings prior to an during the regular and special legislative session(s) during which specific issues with the City’s adopted Legislative Agenda are considered, as well as other issues that may arise that affect the City. 

(7) Work with designated staff to develop special or general legislation in support of the City’s Legislative Agenda.

(8) Recommend courses of action to support oppose or amend pending legislation.

(9) Testify and lobby before State legislative and appropriations committee as necessary on behalf of the City, during the regular session, extended, or special session(s).

(10) Coordinate the delivery of copies and sign up for City testimony before the General Assembly as well as delivery of written position statements as directed by the City.

(11) Coordinate meetings between appropriate City staff and State elected officials.

(12) Provide written weekly updates on the firm’s achievements as they relate to the City’s legislative agenda and other items of interests.

(13) While the Legislature is in session, submit a written summary report shall be submitted to key staff detailing legislative action, status of legislative priorities, anticipated action the coming week, and suggested action key staff may implement. 

(14) Submit a written report that summarizes the status of the City’s Legislative Agenda shall be submitted within ten (10) days of the closing of session.

(15) Appear at least three (3) times at a regularly scheduled Mayor and City Council Meeting held at City Hall. These include: introduction, mid-session update and post-session wrap-up.

(16) When the legislature is not in session, the successful firm shall provide periodic reports on issues of concern to the City; such information may include actions taken at interim committee meetings and advance notice of legislation being proposed.

Due Date:

November 26

Address:

Procurement Division Chief City of Gaithersburg 31 South Summit Avenue Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877

Relevant agencies to consider include Magrino PR and APCO Worldwide.