Legislative Staff Coordinating Committee

Meeting Summary

Oct. 9, 2009
Richmond, Va.

Welcome and Introductions

Nancy Cyr, NCSL Staff Chair, called the meeting to order and introduced LCSS members.

Executive Director's Report

Bill Pound, NCSL Executive Director, indicated that NCSL's FY 2009 budget ended up with a $176,000 surplus, which was primarily due to elimination of the retiree health plan. He said the FY 2010 budget is 15 percent lower than FY 2009 and NCSL is operating within budget so far. The 2009 Legislative Summit met revenue expectations and the fall 2009 staff section seminars are on track to achieve their revised attendance targets. Bill noted that as a cost-saving measure, there will only be two Executive Committee meetings in FY 2011 instead of three (in addition to Legislative Summit); LSCC may be able to meet separately, however, next fall in Denver. Bill was pleased with the Standing Committees new officer orientation meeting, which was conducted by webinar in September to reduce costs. Other cost-saving measures include the elimination of six staff positions at NCSL and a recommendation to Executive Committee to reduce the length of the 2010 Legislative Summit by one day.

Preview of Executive Committee Meetings

Nancy Cyr previewed the Executive Committee schedule in Richmond—Budget, Finance and Rules Subcommittee, and Programs and Strategic Planning Subcommittee—and reminded LSCC members that they were welcome to attend those sessions.

Subcommittee Reports

Technology and E-Learning.  Michael Adams, Technology and E-Learning Chair, presented the subcommittee's report. He reviewed the subcommittee's goals and responsibilities, and noted that NCSL staff had presented an outline of the new website. Michael discussed collaboration tools on the website and reiterated that the Foundation for State Legislatures had given NCSL $35,000 to be used primarily for e-learning grants to staff sections and standing committees. He said it was important to be able to evaluate the use of those grant funds and their results, and to identify e-learning opportunities for all legislative staff, not just those involved with staff sections, especially at Legislative Summit.

Professional Development and Outreach.  Peggy Piety, Professional Development and Outreach Chair, presented the subcommittee's report. She noted that the subcommittee has
combined the jurisdictions of two subcommittees from last year--Professional Development, and Marketing and Outreach. The expanded agenda includes updating the "NCSL and You" brochure; Statehouse Ambassadors; programs at the 2010 Legislative Summit; outreach to personal/partisan staff; Project Citizen Legislative Staff Connection Pilot Project; Legislative Staff Management Institute; training opportunities for senior legislative managers; fall professional development issues with Staff Section Officers; and Standing Committee issues with Standing Committee Staff Officers.

Legislative Institutions.  Roger Norman, Legislative Institutions Chair, presented the subcommittee's report. He reviewed the subcommittee's goals and responsibilities and emphasized work to be done to promote legislative service as a career. The initial focus of that effort will be to develop a series of short videos that highlight what's exciting about staff positions in the legislature. There will be an "anchor" video from which individual state videos will spin-off to illustrate different types of jobs in actual settings. Roger said the videos will be posted on NCSL's website and perhaps on social networking venues.

Staff Section Officers.  Holly Lyons, Staff Section Officers Co-Chair, presented the officers' report. The officers received an update on the fall professional development seminars, five of which had been held (LRL is scheduled October 14-17). Attendance met or exceeded revised expectations. For 2010, six staff sections plan to hold seminars: ASLCS in Milwaukee; NLPES and NLSSA in Baton Rouge; LINCS and LSS in Raleigh; and NALIT (perhaps in Charleston, W.V.). The subcommittee received an update on applications for e-learning grant funds; not all staff sections have applied, and no Standing Committees. Any excess funds will be available on a first-come, first-served basis after January 1. Holly reviewed other agenda items, including coordination with Legislative Institutions on promoting legislative service as a career, and with Standing Committee Officers and Professional Development and Outreach on sessions at Spring and Fall Forum.

Strategic Planning Workgroup. Tim Rice, NCSL Staff Vice Chair, delivered the workgroup's report. He said the workgroup will focus on identifying and gathering material that LSCC had completed in previous years to determine what was most useful, what approaches hadn't worked and what lessons had been learned. Tim indicated that once that research has been completed, members will identify trends, themes and initiatives that may be useful in the workgroup's planning process and to LSCC as a whole.

Standing Committees Report
Judy Hall, Standing Committees Staff Chair, presented the committees' report. She noted that legislative leaders have made a large number of committee appointees to date. She pointed out that the Standing Committees used a webinar this year as orientation for new committee officers and it was very successful; over 100 members participated. Judy said a challenge will be attracting good attendance for the Fall Forum, although 133 people have registered to date (a higher number than normal this far out from the meeting). She concluded by reviewing the forum agenda.

Summary of Staff Section Professional Development Seminars

American Society of Legislative Clerks and Secretaries.  Robert Marchant, ASLCS President-Elect, noted that 222 total participants attended the ASLCS seminar in Seattle, September 16-20. The staff section reached all its budget targets. The 2010 fall seminar is scheduled for Milwaukee.

Leadership Staff Section.  Janeen Halverson, LSS Chair, indicated that LSS met jointly with LINCS in Austin, September 8-12. LSS is looking to meet again with LINCS in Raleigh in 2010.

Legislative Information and Communication Staff Section.  Gwen Bailey, LINCS Chair, described the boot camp and social media content of its seminar, and confirmed LINCS' interest in meeting again with LSS in Raleigh next fall.

National Association of Legislative Information Technology.  Linda Pittsford, NALIT Chair, said 66 total participants attended the NALIT seminar in Austin, which used the same hotel as LSS and LINCS, but held most of its sessions at the State Capitol. The meeting replaced the original seminar scheduled for Honolulu that was cancelled due to travel constraints. NALIT offered e-learning opportunities during the seminar for staff who could not attend.

National Legislative Services and Security Association.  Jimmetta Peoples, NLSSA Vice President, noted that 65 participants attended the NLSSA seminar in Charleston, S.C., September 20-25. The agenda's emphasis was on continuity of government. NLSSA will meet jointly with NLPES in Baton Rouge in 2010.

Legislative Research Librarians.  Elizabeth Lincoln, LRL Chair, described the upcoming seminar scheduled for St. Paul, October 14-17. She noted that 14 participants have registered and that the sessions will be held at the State Capitol, which has minimized costs.

Other Business

Nancy Cyr notified LSCC that Norman Moore, Chief Clerk of the Arizona House and a member of NCSL's Executive Committee, is retiring December 31. Julie Pelegrin will take his place as Staff Vice Chair of the Programs and Strategic Planning Subcommittee.

The meeting adjourned.