Politics of Plating in California
Norm Plotkin and Bryan Leiker were handing out six-page spreadsheets to their assembled group of surface finishers on the steps of the California state capital building in Sacramento much like a head coach and offensive coordinator would do getting their team prepped for the big game.
Plotkin, the executive director of the Metal Finishing Association of Southern and Northern California, and Leiker, president of the MFASC chapter, were preparing to lead their teammates into a series of several dozen meetings and visits with their state senators and assemblymen to talk metal finishing and regulation.
For Leiker, Sales and Marketing Director at K&L Anodizing in Burbank, a third generation, family-owned business founded by his grandfather “Lefty” in 1950, it’s a matter of meeting state officials and building relationships.
“We want to build new relationships with the people at the statehouse and maintain the ones we already have,” he said. “The message we want to get across is that the surface finishing industry contributes $15 billion to the California economy, employs over a hundred thousand Californians and is very important to, among others, the aerospace and defense industry, which has again seen rapid growth in California.”
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The annual Legislative Action Day for the California NASF chapters is not new, but the renewed commitment was evident in May when Plotkin led the group of a dozen or so platers and suppliers into the state capital to chat with senators and assemblymen in meetings that had been arranged several weeks and days prior to their arrival by the associations’ long time contract lobbyist, Jerry Desmond.
First, Plotkin met the previous evening with the group, including MFANC president Terry McGuiness, who also served to gather his northern brethren for the annual capital meetings. They planned their visits for the following day and talked strategy.
Plotkin had more than 20 years of legislative and advocacy experience, running a full-service lobbying, association management, government relations and communications firm based in Sacramento.
He also worked as a consultant for the California state assembly on both the insurance and health committees, a role that brought him close to the assemblymen and senators that he and the metal finishing groups were now lobbying.
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