Legislative Staff Coordinating Committee

Meeting Summary

San Antonio, Texas
August 8, 2011

Tim Rice, NCSL Staff Chair, welcomed LSCC members to the meeting.

Executive Director’s Report
Bill Pound, NCSL Executive Director, indicated that registration for the Legislative Summit was approximately 4,600. He reported that NCSL ended FY 2011 with a budget surplus.

Preview of the Executive Committee Meeting
Tim Rice noted that the task force charged with studying the NCSL Standing Committees would be making recommendations that would require changes in the NCSL’s bylaws.

Year-End Summaries form LSCC Work Groups
Legislative Institution. Wendy Madsen, chair, reported that eight of the 10 proposed videos for promoting legislative service as a career were complete; the next step is marketing the videos. She noted that the new Young Professionals group will meet at Legislative Summit on August 11. She said the work group will promote a speech made by former NCSL Staff Chair John Phelps as a means to reach out to veteran legislative staff.

Outreach. Peggy Piety, chair, reported on the Personal Staff seminar being conducted at Legislative Summit. She described the orientation session for first-time legislative staff attendees on August 9. She noted that the International Program has scheduled a tour of the Texas state capitol in Austin for 200 delegates on August 9, and that Rick DeLeon, Texas Senate Sergeant at Arms and NLSSA vice president, was assisting the delegation with the tour. Peggy discussed the pilot project being conducted for NCSL’s Project Citizen, but noted that grant funding to support it had ended and new fundraising was underway.   She updated the status of the Statehouse Ambassadors program, and indicated that only 14 states have revised their mailing lists since the 2010 elections. She concluded her remarks by noting that a networking event for Statehouse Ambassadors is scheduled for August 9.

Massachusetts Senator Richard Moore, NCSL President, joined the meeting and thanked the Texas legislative staff for their hard work in hosting the Legislative Summit. He thanked all legislative staff for the work they do in supporting state legislatures. Senator Moore said the Personal Staff seminar had gotten off to a good start and that it could help reinforce the value of NCSL to the legislators they serve. He concluded his remarks by welcoming Michael Adams as NCSL’s incoming Staff Chair.

Professional Development. Patsy Spaw, chair, thanked Senator Moore for launching his civility initiative. She reported that a subcommittee charged with reviewing the NCSL-U web page had made nine recommendations to improve it and that eight of those recommendations already have been implemented by NCSL staff. She said the subcommittee looking at e-learning has selected two topics for future webinars—social media and human resources. Patsy noted that the work group referred its study of how to assist senior and middle management staff to the Strengthening Legislative Staff work group, and described a legislative staff workshop scheduled for August 10. She concluded her remarks by describing the Legislative Staff University session on “Ethics at the Box Office” scheduled for August 9 with University of Colorado Professor Allan Wallis.

Strengthening Legislative Staff.  Julie Pelegrin, chair, described the staff self-assessment tool the work group was revising. She thanked NCSL staff who have been testing the tool, and indicated that individual or group office testing will begin shortly. Julie indicated that the tool will be rolled out at a Legislative Summit session on August 8, and the work group hopes to receive funding for a webinar to promote its use. She said the tool also may be used at the staff section professional development seminars this fall, and eventually may be used as a strategic planning tool.

Tim Rice introduced members of the NCSL Staff Nominating Committee and candidates for the office of NCSL Staff Vice Chair and at-large members of Executive Committee.

Staff Section Officers. Jimmetta Peoples, chair, reported on the dates and locations for 2011 staff section professional development seminars, noting that three of them will be joint meetings: NLPES and NLSSA in Denver; RACSS and NALIT in Portland, Ore.; and LINCS and LSS in Richmond. She indicated that the hub cities for 2012 are Austin, Atlanta and Madison; NALIT plans to be in Madison and NLPES will be in Atlanta. Jimmetta said the e-learning grants awarded by NCSL to staff sections have been very successful, with more than half the staff sections, the Legislative Education Staff Network and three NCSL Standing Committees taking advantage of the funds for webinars and other professional development opportunities.

Strategic Planning. Michael Adams, NCSL Staff Vice Chair, asked LSCC members for input to help him identify potential candidates for LSCC appointments.

Bylaws Review
Nancy Cyr, NCSL Immediate Past Staff Chair, described the recommendations of a task force appointed by Tim Rice charged with reviewing NCSL’s bylaws and LSCC procedures for filling staff vacancies on Executive Committee and among the staff officers. The LSCC approved changes to LSCC’s “Nominating Procedures for Legislative Staff” related to “Terms of Office and Vacancies.” The changes can be found on NCSL’s website at:


Closing Remarks
Tim Rice thanked all LSCC members for their work during the year and presented them with an embossed copy of the NCSL Civility Accord approved by Executive Committee at its May 2011 meeting in Boston. The meeting was adjourned.