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PUBLIC POLICY

BUILDOUT CALIFORNIA PUBLIC POLICY GUIDING PRINCIPLES

 

BuildOUT California (BuildOUT California) advocates for Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender (LGBT) businesses, and our Allies, at every level of government and business affairs. We convene a cross-section of the diverse LGBT business community, and our Allies, to develop and implement policy, establish a clear and persuasive voice in government and business concerns, and play an active role throughout the state of California, Nationally and when necessary, Internationally.

 

The primary public policy focus of BuildOUT California is within the stated boundaries of California as a whole; therefore local, state and federal policies and legislation are engaged in when they impact the economy or business climate in cities, counties, and regions within the state’s borders.

 

The following principles have been established to guide the public policy mission of the BuildOUT California, to both protect the interests of the business community and assure that the State of California has the business climate and operational infrastructure needed long into the future:

 

  • View the private sector as a partner in serving the needs of the public and the LGBT community as a whole.

  • Ensure that government works to foster a political and policy climate that supports economic investments, the expansion of employment and business activity especially within the LGBT community.

  • Ensure that government adopts laws and regulations that comply with and support its economic strategy.

  • Ensure that regulations on business are reasonable and do not put California’s LGBT businesses at a competitive disadvantage

  • Require government to be accountable for its actions and for the programs it operates and that it is measured periodically to ensure maximum efficiency and return on investment in public funds.

  • Ensure the protection of private property rights

  • Encourage a tax system that is market competitive

  • Promote a legal system that contains checks and balances to ensure fairness to all

  • Provide an educational system that prepares people for jobs and fosters the empowerment of LGBT youth.

  • Encourage cooperation among government agencies and reduce the proliferation of additional regulatory agencies.

  • Promote the quality of life that ensures California remains an attractive place to live, work, visit and do business.

  • Promote economic development opportunities in California for business of all types.

  • Provide an adequate supply of housing and a modern transportation infrastructure to meet the needs of our growing region.

  • Support policies that improve California’s sustainability, disaster resilience and ability to adapt to climate change.

  • Supports programs and efforts that assist start-up businesses and provide development and support services to small businesses. Specifically, BuildOUT California believes that helping small businesses understand regulatory requirements, employment law, contracts and financing, and certain mandates results in economic growth and prosperity.

PROCESS FOR TAKING ACTION ON A PUBLIC POLICY ISSUE

 

Phase I – Applicability

 

Upon request by a member of the organization, or an external source, to act on an item, BuildOUT California will first implement the following guidelines:

 

  1. Does the item further the vision or mission of BuildOUT California?

  2. Does the item have an impact on the general membership?

  3. Does the item clearly fall under a position within the current, Founders-adopted, Public Policy Agenda?

  4. Does the item fall outside the Public Policy Agenda and have a significant impact on the greater community such that BuildOUT California should consider taking a position?

 

A ‘no’ answer to questions 1 or 2 determines that the item cannot be taken up by BuildOUT California

 

FOUNDER’S ACTION CLAUSE:  If the item meets criteria 1, 2 and 3 or 4, and the item is a request for an endorsement of a position on an initiative, referendum or other  ballot measure, a majority vote shall be required by the Founders of its members in attendance at a regular or special Founders meeting.  In addition, if the item is a non-ballot public policy issue, the Public Policy Committee shall provide notice as set forth in Phase III below to the Founders before BuildOUT California releases a public statement on such issue.  Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Founders may direct further vetting by the Public Policy Committee.

Phase II – Research & Due Diligence

 

Once applicability has been satisfied the Committee, the following steps will be implemented to ensure the item is fully evaluated.  The Public Policy Committee is empowered by the Founders to delegate some or all of these tasks to the Committee:

 

  1. Obtain a copy of the item (proposal, bill, referendum, initiative, etc. whenever possible or applicable).

  2. Obtain relevant information on the item from the official proponents and opponents of the item (as applicable).

  3. Invite a representative from the official proponent and opponent to present their position to the Committee or Founders (as deemed necessary).

  4. Solicit membership feedback on how an item may affect their business (as deemed necessary).  This shall include but not be limited to surveys, focus groups, forums, targeted conversations, etc.

Phase III – Analysis, Communication & Action

Once all relevant information to an item is gathered, the Public Policy Committee will analyze the item including how it might affect BuildOUT California’s constituents, businesses, the greater community, etc.

 

The Founders will determine by a simple majority vote of those present and/or via phone to take one (or a combination) of the following actions on the item on behalf of the Founders and BuildOUT California

 

  1. Endorse a position (in favor or opposed to)

  2. Refuse to take a position

  3. Refer the matter for further research to the Public Policy Committee

  4. Refer the matter for action to the Public Policy Committee

  5. Recommendation to the Founders for a vote (only required if criteria of the Founders Action Clause is satisfied)

 

Prior to public release of any position statement, the Public Policy Committee is required to provide 24-hour notice to the Founders via email of the position with an explanation of the item and its rationale.  If any substantive objection(s) is (are) raised by at least one-third of sitting Founders, then the item cannot be publically released until the Founders have the opportunity vote on the item at the next regular or special Founders meeting.

 

It is the responsibility of the Committee Chair (or a designated Committee member) to inform the Founders of the Committee’s actions via Founders Report with or without an oral presentation at the next regularly scheduled Founders Meeting, at the Chair’s discretion.

SPECIAL NOTE: Time Sensitive Items

 

If an item requires immediate action and the full roster of Founders cannot be brought together in person, via phone, or via email for discussion and action then a committee appointed by the Chair of the Founders and the Public Policy Committee chair may take appropriate action provided all phases are appropriately executed and the decision is unanimous.  Input from key Subject Matter Experts will also be included in the processing of time-sensitive matters/requests for position.
 

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