Thursday, September 22, 2005

Hurry up and Wait

I've spent some time doing research today. My goal was to lay out a timeline for the bills going through the committee process. Hah! So far, no one has been able to tell me anything and my phone bill gets larger and larger. I called the Senate Finance Committee majority phone number. The first lesson I learned is that before you call someone you have to know everything about the bill you are asking about. You must have it in your hands with pertinent information highlighted. The person who answered the phone figured I had called the wrong committee. After much discussion is was decided that I needed to talk to someone in "taxes". I could have saved myself on the phone bill if I had known why the bill was in that committee. The result of all that talking was I have to wait for a call back. Since it is now 4:19 in Washington DC and no one has called back, I'm guessing that isn't going to happen today.

Then I phoned the House Education and Workforce Committee. There is some lag time between my last round of calls. I needed to get my ducks in a row and guess at what parts of the bill sent it to that committee. Notes were taken and I made the call. Absolutely no help there on a timeline for when the bill would go before the committee. It was pointed out to me that I could use the dropdown box at the top of the screen that says "legislation" to find out what was going on once something was happening with the bill. That's good to know so I guess it wasn't a total waste of time and money to make that phone call.

I then called Senator Grassley's office since he is the Chairmen of the Senate Finance Committee. I thought I would attack the problem from a different direction. I got the impression that the office was not flooded with calls or letters about this bill. The person who answered the phone was unfamiliar with the bill. It was decided that I should be turned over to "someone in taxes". I'd left a message there already during my first call of the day. I guess I'm now calling in circles. How does anyone accomplish anything in Washington? You start to understand why there are paid lobbyists.

I tried tactic number three for today. I called the contact number on the press release from Representative Marilyn Musgrave's office to ask some questions. The nice person who answered the phone and I quickly came one conclusion. The email the offices sends out to answer questions about the bill was not going to answer my questions. Off I went to voice mail, again. I left a message for Representative Musgrave's legislative assistant. I'm guessing I won't get a call back today.

Tommorrow is another day and I'll try to make more calls to provide people with more information.


At 7:04 AM, Blogger Susan said...

Good info, Kara. Kind of like scatter shot spread all over the place, isn't it?
Very time consuming.

At 4:48 PM, Blogger icbleu said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 4:49 PM, Blogger icbleu said...

Excellent start. Keep at it and don't let the process get you down.

Why does Mr. Smith goes to washington seem to come to mind as I read your blog?

At 11:41 PM, Blogger Daryl Cobranchi said...

Musgrave is a lost cause. For unknown reasons, she and Farris are joined at the hip. She introduced HONDA back in '03 and also introduced the vile FMA of which Farris was ahuge supporter.


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