ESA Takes the Security Message to Washington

June 9, 2015
Day on Capitol Hill focused on key legislative issues

Members of the Electronic Security Association (ESA) gathered in Washington, D.C. on May 4 and 5 to participate in the association’s annual Day on Capitol Hill. More than 60 association delegates visited 102 Congressional offices, meeting with legislators or high-ranking staff members to emphasize the industry’s concerns about legislative issues.

This year, ESA focused on three major areas of legislation:

• Support of U.S. Department of Justice Funding for School Security Grants in FY 2016
• Net Neutrality and Telecommunications Policy 
• Support of Apprenticeship Programs

“This was a great opportunity to drive awareness and shed light on the issues and future of the security industry. ESA gave me the ability to walk specific issues into the hands of lawmakers, drive conversations and dialog, and build positive relationships within Congress. This event also allowed me to strengthen existing relationships with colleagues as well as learn and share new ideas,” said Robert Few, Director, Regulatory & Compliance with Time Warner Cable IntelligentHome.

The event began in the afternoon on Monday, May 4 with an ESA Government Relations Committee meeting at 2pm which was then followed by the Platinum Orientation Meeting sponsored by Honeywell. The orientation meeting helped delegates brush up on the talking points and get clarification on any issues in preparation for their meetings the following day. Following the afternoon meetings, attendees gathered for the Platinum Reception, also sponsored by Honeywell, which took place at the Hyatt Arlington Hotel.

The Silver Breakfast sponsored by ADI, Altronix, Hikvision and Security America RRG kicked off Tuesday morning at the event. This breakfast featured Lou Fiore the Chairman of AICC who presented information about the Telecommunications Act re-write and how it may affect the electronic security industry. After breakfast attendees headed to the Hill for their appointments and then convened with one another again for the Gold Lunch sponsored by Axis Communications, Telguard, and TRI-ED an Anixter Company, which took place in the Monument Room at the prestigious Occidental Grill & Seafood Restaurant. During the lunch Syed Zaeem Hosain Chief Technology Officer with Aeris Communications, Inc. spoke about what the future looks like for alarm companies as it relates to 2G, 3G and beyond as well as how the Internet of Things (IoT) will play into the industry.

Chapter leaders returned to the host hotel for the Chapter Presidents’ Meeting while others went back to the Hill for afternoon appointments. After debriefing with John Chwat, ESA’s Director of Government Relations, attendees wrapped up the event during the Diamond Cocktail Reception and Dinner, sponsored by Interlogix. The reception took attendees on a scenic riverboat cruise on the Potomac River that brought attendees to Sequoia restaurant for dinner. While dining with the Potomac as the backdrop, attendees heard from Major General (Ret.) David A. Morris, Founder and Owner of Decisive Edge, LLC and the current Chairman of the Green Beret Foundation as well as Jennifer Paquette, the Executive Director of the Green Beret Foundation. The General and Jennifer both shared moving stories about the Green Beret Foundation and the incredible work they do, providing a poignant introduction to the organization that ESA Gives Back is supporting in 2015.

“Participating in the Day on Capitol Hill, as well as maintaining relationships with politicians at the local and state level, helps the industry foster an environment that encourages business. This is the most important function of our state chapters and national association,” said Kevin Lehan, with EMERgency 24 and the Executive Director of the Illinois Electronic Security Association.

This annual event was made possible by the sponsors including, Interlogix, Honeywell, Axis Communications, Telguard, TRI-ED an Anixter Company, ADI, Altronix, Hikvision and Security America Risk Retention Group.

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Staff Reports

Editorial and news reports authored by the media team from Cygnus Security Media, including, Security Technology Executive magazine and Security Dealer & Integrator (SD&I) magazine.