Advancing our common agenda

By Alberto Bianchetti, NY Government Relations

Eileen Cifone of New York Government Relations updates Brooklyn Senator Jesse E. Hamilton at a recent Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce event in Albany. The Hollywood image of fat cats in smoky back rooms may be what often comes to mind when you think about lobbying, but for National Grid’s New York Government Relations team, the most effective work comes when we partner with other groups with common interests to create coalitions that inform elected officials and policymakers, and shape positive outcomes.

That work happens all year, although the busiest season is right now, with the New York State Legislature in full session, proposing and debating laws that will have lasting impact on National Grid, our customers and the energy industry. Just this month NYGR staffers joined the Buffalo Niagara Partnership and the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce in visits to Albany lawmakers. In January, team members joined the Long Island Association in their annual Albany event.

Our approach with the state legislature is mirrored in efforts before the City Council of New York, and locally focused work on Long Island, as the Government Relations embeds National Grid into the fabric of stakeholders critical to both the company and elected officials.

“Working with groups such as the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Long Island Association and others to advance our common agenda is the best way for lawmakers to see that we are a valued part of the community and to add resonance to our position on key issues,” said Echo Cartwright, Director of New York Government Relations. “These partnerships, together with helping navigate constituent issues, supporting company operations initiatives on the ground, and informing elected officials and policymakers of key issues with the company such as rate cases, are at the core of what we do.”

Grant Loomis, vice president for government relations for the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, agrees.

“National Grid is a trusted source of advice and counsel to shape our positions on issues in Western New York and statewide,” Loomis said. “When we meet with elected officials and policy makers we want them to know we are speaking on behalf of our members and our region. Having National Grid stand beside us sends a clear message that we are together in working for the benefit of the New Yorkers those officials represent.”

Alberto Bianchetti of New York Government Relations (center) joined members and staff of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership in briefing Buffalo Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes (center, black jacket) on key issues in the proposed state budget outside the New York State Assembly Chamber in Albany.

Alberto Bianchetti of New York Government Relations (center) joined members and staff of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership in briefing Buffalo Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes (center, black jacket) on key issues in the proposed state budget outside the New York State Assembly Chamber in Albany.

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