Business Leaders Travel to Washington D.C. to Lobby on Capitol Hill
by Grant Bixby – Principal Broker of Bixby Residential at COMPASS
November 25, 2019
The Business Alliance to Protect The Pacific Coast was in good company November 13th and 14thwith our Gulf and Atlantic Coast brethren combining to visit over 60 Congressional and Senate offices. Led by Oceana’s excellent DC based Legislative Staffers, teams met to discuss the Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) appropriations bill. For nearly 30 years we successfully protected our coasts from new offshore oil expansion in this fashion. While the House has passed two protective bills this year, they are Dead On Arrival in the Senate (much like marine life after seismic airgun blasting). So keeping strong anti-drilling language in the final appropriations bill will protect our coasts in the immediate future until permanent protections are passed.
Delivering the message for BAPPC were Founding Member and CEO of HDX Hydration Mix, Vipe Desai (@vipedesai) and new Member Grant Bixby, Principal Broker of Bixby Residential at COMPASS (@bixbyresidential). Together they met with Congressional offices of Pelosi, Rouda, Levin, Porter, Aguilar, Lowenthal, Carbajal, Barragan, Eshoo, Brownley and Senators Feinstein and Harris—all Ocean Champs! We are fortunate to have near universal support from our west coast elected officials on this issue.
“It was encouraging to see our leaders fighting with us for these protections,” said Bixby. “From my real estate perspective, I can’t find a single property owner who thinks more offshore rigs are a good idea. It devalues our investments and puts our coastal businesses at risk. As a father of two and a lover of our oceans, I can’t sit back and watch this administration open up 90% of our outer continental shelf to drilling.”
Bixby is not alone in his beliefs. Over 50,000 businesses are represented in the Business Alliances nationwide, from all coastal states and both parties.
“It was clear to Grant and I that the folks we met with on Capitol Hill were pleasantly surprised and interested to learn more of the depth of opposition to offshore oil and gas drilling”. said Desai. “From small mom and pop businesses, large multi-national corporations, environmental groups, Chambers of Commerce, Visitors Bureaus to municipalities and major tourism, fishing, outdoor and real estate associations, including a long list of bipartisan leaders from local, state and federal offices are all united in opposing this irresponsible plan to drill off our coastlines. Our mission is truly bipartisan.”
After Wednesday’s meetings in the Capitol Building, the Business Alliances met on Thursday with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), the Interior Department agency responsible for managing the offshore oil exploration and leasing process, then headed to The Hall of States to confer with the Coastal Governor’s Staffs. We gained invaluable insight into the process and how we can work more effectively with our government partners.
While our voices were heard, we need your help to grow BAPPC and increase our influence so that the business coastal community will lead the change.
View photos from the fly-in and lobby day here.