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Get things done

Get things done - Brev ty IVIARGO VAicfw_OVER Reading l0-7...

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Brev; ty IVIARGO VAi{OVER Reading l0-7 Get Things Done through Coalitions What do the American Paper Institute, National Coffee Associarion. Milk Industry Foundation, and American Council on Education have in common? It may seem unlikely, but the answer is "an interest in sewer user charges- " These four associations and I I others formed the Coalition for ICR Repeal to protect their members' interests in sewer user charges. Coalition members term industrial cost recovery (ICR) as "an unfair. unnecessary, and costly provision of the 1972 Federal Water Pollution Control Acr." This panicular exarnple of a coaiition illustntes two very important poinrs that you, a leader of your association, should be aware of- First of all, the coalition was successful. The industriai cost recoverv provision was repealed on October I, 1980, and coalition rnembers frankly admit rhar they could never have done it alone. It took the efforts and-even more impon3ng-1hg clout of all 14 members to accomplish their -eoal. The second point is this: Coalition members seemed like unlikely allies. Who would have thought they had anything in common? "It's an interesting conglomeration of business groups with one simiiar intercst," acknowledges Sheldon E- Steinbach, general counsel for the Arnerican Council on Education, Washington- "We alt had one common problem-a proposed increase in sewer user charges. "l remember the stunned look on the laces of rhe people ar the first coalition meeting," he says with a chuckle. "They found out quickly that my association had the exact concem theirs did." 1VHO ARE OUR ALLIES? Rieht now, yourassociation is probably a nremberof a coalition- But do you know what the coalition's purpose is? If you don't, ask your associarion's - Rcprintcd with pcnnission from thc Dcccnber l9ll0 issuc of Lca<Iarship mr_g:zinc. Copyriehr 19E0, by thc Amcicrn Socicty of A.ssociari<>n Erccurivcs. 53 305
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5 Scction Ten Potrcr chief paid officer. He or she usually represents an association's interests in a coalition eifort. And w'hile you are talking ro your chicf paid officcr, ask whar orhcr associations comprise the coalition- You could be surprised. Like the Coali- tion for ICR Repcal, their names mighr nor suggesr a rie-in with your association's cause. In fact, they may be the names of associations that havc been adversaries or compctitors in the past. It's not all that unusual, says Mr. Steinbach- "We look for common causc with other groups. We may be allies on one cause and enemies on anothcr. It's happened rime aiter time.' It's imponant to overlook past differences and concentrate on (he prescnt goal of the coaiition, agrecs Dr. Paul A. Kerschner. associate director for Iegislation, research, and programs at the National Retired Teachers Associa- tion/American Association of Retired Persons, Washington. "Two organiza- tions can be in deep dissent on sorne issues," he says. "On
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Get things done - Brev ty IVIARGO VAicfw_OVER Reading l0-7...

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