Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Why should I attend Foundations on the Hill?
A: As Congress continues to focus on foundations, your Senators and Representatives need to hear from you. By attending Foundations on the Hill, you can develop or strengthen your relationships with your members of Congress and share your views on the latest charitable legislation. Members of Congress are most influenced when constituents from their states or districts advance a cause on behalf of themselves and their national organizations. A meeting in Washington shows an extra level of dedication and commitment to that cause.
Q: What is the ACR Summit for Leaders?
A: The Alliance for Charitable Reform’s Summit for Leaders is a conference that provides a snapshot of the current political issues impacting philanthropy and nonprofits, and guidance on how to effectively advance your cause in Washington. The ACR Summit is open to foundation executives, nonprofit leaders, and others interested in the intersection of public policy and philanthropy. In 2013 the ACR Summit will be a part of the Foundations on the Hill programming.
Q: How do I set up congressional meetings?
A: Congressional meetings are usually set up through local regional associations. If you need to find your regional association, visit FOTH Delegation Map. For more information, contact Tim Huber at 703/879-0693.
Q: How do I determine my Member of Congress?
A: Simply visit the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate websites and select your state or input your zip code. You can also contact the Council’s Government Relations staff at 703/879-0689 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: I thought private foundations, by law, are prohibited from lobbying. Are they?
A: Foundation representatives often believe that they cannot participate in Foundations on the Hill because private foundations, by law, are prohibited from lobbying on specific legislation. While Congress has placed restrictions on private foundation lobbying, grantmakers CAN still meet with public officials and discuss policy issues as long as they do not urge a Member to vote for or against a specific bill. In addition, private foundations CAN lobby for or against so-called "self-defense" legislation – legislation that affects a foundation’s existence, powers and duties, tax-exempt status, or right to receive tax-deductible contributions. For more information, click here.
Q: Can I still participate in Foundations on the Hill if I am not a member of a regional association?
A: Yes! Every year there are a number of foundations that participate in Foundations on the Hill that are located in states or regions without a regional association. If your foundation falls in this category, please contact Tim Huber at 703/879-0693.