Lobbying Congress on Healthcare Issues
NIEMS must follow the lobbying rules required of a non-profit organization. Therefore, representatives of NIEMS may lobby government officials but are restricted in the extent of lobbying they may do. Federal regulations state that no SUBSTANTIAL part of the activities of a non-profit organization may consist of lobbying activities. However, neither the Internal Revenue Code nor the Treasury regulations define "substantial."
Therefore, NIEMS can and will lobby Congress and individual State legislatures for changes when the desired outcome is consistent with our primary mission of education, research, and safety provided such efforts do not become substantial.
Department of the Treasury defines "lobbying" within the Internal Revenue Code as "attempting to influence legislation by propaganda or otherwise." An organization is lobbying if it attempts to influence legislation through direct contact, or by urging the public to contact, members of a legislative body for the purpose of proposing, supporting, or opposing legislation. In general, lobbying is defined as attempting to persuade or influence the members of a government body at the city, county, state or federal level. Lobbying seeks to influence executive, judicial and regulatory institutions. Lobbying is when you contact friends and neighbors in an effort to influence public opinion. Other examples of lobbying include appearing in a public forum to discuss pending legislation or writing a letter to the editor of a newspaper.
What is not Considered Lobbying
Making available the results of nonpartisan analysis, study, or research or providing technical advice or assistance in response to a written request by a governing body is not considered lobbying. Contacting NIEMS about legislation of direct interest to the EMS profession is not considered lobbying. Communicating with government officials or employees when the communications do not constitute an attempt to influence legislation is not considered lobbying. An organization is not engaged in lobbying if it responds to a request of a legislative body to provide testimony on pending legislation. If the organization initiates the request, however, a different rule applies.