Chair's Corner: Kathy McGuire, Florida OPPAGA
For an organization in which so much of the work is done by volunteers, NLPES has a lot going on, thanks to our active membership and executive committee! And Bob Boerner, our NCSL liaison!
Thank you, staff of the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office, for the great job you did hosting our fall professional development conference! Twenty-one states participated. It’s always interesting and inspiring to talk to staff in other states about how they handle the same dilemmas we face in our own offices.
This year we continue to focus on delivering training opportunities to your desktop to help compensate for o6ur office budget constraints. I hope you were able to participate in John Turcotte’s webinar on Effective Legislative Presentations, Stan Stenersen’s webinar on Writing for the Legislative Audience, and Steve Harkreader’s webinar on the Power of Pivot Tables. All three were fun and very helpful; you can revisit them any time on our website training page.
NLPES also has a library of training podcasts, narrated PowerPoints, and slide shows on fieldwork, writing and publication, and management topics, including finding savings, reviewing state agency contracts, developing surveys, and strategic planning for legislative oversight offices. Several offices, including Colorado, Wisconsin, Mississippi, Texas Sunset, and Florida, have contributed to this collection. What’s YOUR office’s best training? We’d love it if you’d share it too! Contact Karl Spock with questions or your contribution.
Thank you Bob Boerner, Scott Sager (WI), Dale Carlson (CA), Angus Maciver (MT), and Patrick Goldsmith (LA) for launching our new electronic newsletter! And thank you James Barber for producing the newsletter over the past 10 years!
Your executive committee members look forward to hearing from you this year. If you have ideas you would like write about or see explored in question of the month, the newsletter, or distance training, please contact us! Kathy McGuire
NCSL Upcoming Publications
- Tobacco Cessation in Medicaid and Employee Programs
- Primary Seat Belt Laws
- Expanding HIV/AIDS Prevention Efforts
- National Board Certification for Principals
- The Vexing Problem of Sexting
- Early Childhood Advisory Councils
- State Injury Prevention Programs
- The Role of Community Health Centers
- Motorcycle Safety
- Clean Coal
- Asset Building
- Medical Data Codes—ICD-10
- NCSL Task Force Report on School Dropout Prevention and Recovery
- NCSL’s Guide to Leaders and Legislatures 2011
- Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting
- Promoting Healthy Communities: Trends in Recent Legislation
Upcoming meetings or seminars:
National Redistricting Seminar, January 21-24, 2011. Hurry! This meeting is right around the corner!
NCSL Spring Forum and Meeting of the Standing Committees, April 14-16, 2011.
Legislative Summit 2011, August 8-11, 2011, San Antonio, Texas.
Legislative Staff Management Institute (LSMI), Aug. 27 - Sept. 3, 2011, Sacramento, Calif.
“Effective Legislative Presentations”
Legislators do not have time to read the materials they need to read and so they rely on staff to present bill drafts, fiscal notes, revenue estimates, and research results. Unfortunately, presenters may do things unconsciously that fail to inform and cause legislators to react poorly. This webinar provides a set of principles for understanding legislative life and preparing and delivering stand out presentations.
- Appreciate confounding pressures and confusion of legislative life
- Understand and avoid staff tendencies to present in counterproductive ways
- Review learning and personality preferences that influence legislators as listeners
- Deliver a message and then sustain that message with confidence
- Use a simple “fill in” form to prepare a powerful two-minute presentation preview that gets attention, frames and encapsulates
- Anticipate and field questions with poise and appropriate protocol
- Using equipment, handouts, and avoiding embarrassment
Archived webinar available.
“The Power of Pivot Tables: Number Crunching Made Easy“
Need to compare travel expenditures between agencies or expenditures across juvenile justice programs? Summarizing data with Excel pivot tables is a snap. Learn to use pivot tables to do frequency counts, cross-tabulate data, calculate subtotals and averages by grouping categories, plus much more. Excel 2007 has an improved pivot table interface that makes summarizing data quick and easy.
Archived webinar available.
2010 Professional Development Seminar
The 2010 NLPES Professional Development Seminar was hosted by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office in Baton Rouge. The seminar was cosponsored by the National Legislative Program Evaluation Society on October 4 – 6. The National Legislative Services and Security Association (NLSSA) also met in Baton Rouge and the two staff sections offered a joint luncheon and joint plenary session.
Legislative staff from 21 states participated in the seminar. The breakout sessions covered a wide range of topics including ARRA funds, budget cuts, charter schools, conservation lands, correctional cost savings, information technology, mental health, NLPES peer reviews, sex offenders, state lotteries and vehicle fleets. Tuesday’s joint session with NLSSA featured a former Navy SEAL discussing Leadership in Challenging Times. Seminar participants had many opportunities to meet and exchange ideas with their colleagues from other states starting with the opening reception held on Monday evening at the Old State Capitol.
Our thanks go out to Michael Battle and Patrick Goldsmith and their Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office colleagues for all their hard work in hosting the 2010 professional development seminar. We also thank all the speakers and moderators for their informative and timely sessions.
NLPES Office Happenings
At Florida OPPAGA, Tim Elwell has been promoted to Staff Director of the Education Policy Area and Mark West has been promoted to Methodologist. Gary Vanlandingham, who has worked for the Florida Legislature for 28 years including the last seven as director of the Office of Program Planning and Government Accountability (OPPAGA), left his state post at the end of 2010 to become director of the Pew Center on the States' Results First initiative in Washington, D.C. Deputy Director Kathy McGuire has been named Interim Director.
On September 30, 2010, Scott Frank was appointed Legislative Post Auditor for the State of Kansas. He replaces Barb Hinton, who left in June 2010 to become the Deputy Director of Performance Audit for the Washington State Auditor’s Office.
Karen Leblanc was promoted to manager in the Performance Audit Services Section in October, 2010. More on page 2
The National Legislative Program Evaluation Society (NLPES) is one of ten staff sections associated with the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). NLPES includes employees of state legislative agencies engaged in program evaluation or performance auditing.
The purpose of NLPES is to advance the profession of legislative program evaluation and performance auditing and to provide members with relevant training, opportunities for exchanging ideas and information, and recognition for superior performance. Interested persons whose professional work precludes membership may request to affiliate with NLPES. Affiliates are invited to participate in NLPES activities and promote the Society's interests, but only members can vote in NLPES elections and hold an elective office. NLPES does not charge dues.
NLPES holds its Networking and Awards Luncheon in conjunction with NCSL's Legislative Summit. The outgoing chair presides over the Networking and Awards Luncheon where staff section activities are discussed, committee reports are given and members of the executive committee for the coming year are introduced.
New Additions to the NLPES Training Products Matrix “Narrated PowerPoints” Are you looking to produce short, narrated PowerPoint presentations to quickly summarize or peak interest in your reports? If so, this presentation provides tips on how to make them.
NCSL Legislative Information Services Program | 303-856-1353
Scott Sager, Wisconsin
Dale Carlson, California
Angus Maciver, Montana