If you're just starting out, the closer you get to the ground
level, the more tangible your impact can be. Run for your
local tax board. A CPA can add a lot of value.
How can CPAs help by serving as campaign treasurers?
For a lot of candidates, this is the first time they've run for
office. A treasurer who can help them navigate the ins and
outs can be very valuable.
The process in Connecticut has been made easier for
treasurers through the State Elections Enforcement
Commission (SEEC). Everything is done online. The rules
are very clear. SEEC folks are very helpful. The days of a
treasurer flying blind are gone.
We often call on the CTCPA membership to reach
out to their legislators about issues that affect the
profession. How can they make sure that outreach
has the most impact?
Reaching out to individual legislators does matter, as long
as it's personalized and you are reaching out to the person
who represents your district. If a legislator gets a dozen
emails on a certain topic, he or she is going to take notice.
It doesn't take 500 emails to make a difference. A lot of
people say "Well, my email's not going to matter." It actually
I like receiving emails from my constituents. It's easy. I can
get back to you at 2:00 a.m. Everyone has time to write a
two-minute email. I respond personally to every individually
written email. I even respond to people who disagree
with me. My hope is that maybe, at a minimum, they're
appreciative that I've thought about the issue.
How else can CPAs make a difference?
Get to know your legislator. There are so many opportunities
at chamber of commerce events, community programs,
business breakfasts. We're just regular people like everyone
else. Pick up the phone or send an email and ask your
legislator to meet.
By virtue of being a CPA, you're already seen as having
an expertise in finance and the economy. Offer to meet
to discuss the impacts of a statute or regulation on your
company or your clients.
The state is in a fiscal crisis right now. If there ever were a
time for the Connecticut CPA community to have a strong
impact on fiscal policy, it's now.
"If there ever were a time for
the Connecticut CPA community
to have a strong impact on fiscal
policy, it's now."
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and more as they happen at the Capitol.
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