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How do I testify on issues I care about?

How do I testify on issues I care about?

The Chamber Advocacy Toolkit is designed to provide you and your business with resources, references, and guidelines for effective involvement in the policy making arena. Below you will find a wide assortment of information and tools for you and your employees to utilize.

At some point, you may want to provide testimony during a City Council or County Commission hearing. We can help prepare you for such an event. If you’re testifying on an issue for which the Loveland Chamber of Commerce is taking a stand, please notify us in advance at 970-744-4791 or email Brian Williams using our contact us form.
When should I provide testimony?
We at the Loveland Chamber believe that our investors can provide a unique and personal view on issues. In certain circumstances, we may call upon you to directly represent your company and to provide testimony.How do I schedule a time to submit testimony?
The Loveland Chamber will help coordinate your testimony if you are testifying on behalf of an issue the Loveland Chamber Board has agreed to track. If you wish to testify on an unrelated issue, you can visit the city, county, or state website to see where your issue falls on the agenda. Show up early for City Council or County Commission hearings and allow yourself plenty of time. Often hearings can go long or short, so you should be prepared to testify earlier than you had intended or later than you anticipated.

Do I need to sign up to testify?
Not necessarily. For most of the public hearings at Loveland City Council and their commissions, you are not required to sign up to testify. All you need to do is show up and be ready when the announcement is given that they are taking testimony on your issue.

How do I address the elected officials?
Your opening remarks should always contain a formal introduction to the body, your name, and whom you are representing. Here is an example: “Thank you, Mayor and Councilors. My name is (insert name) and I am here today representing (insert company).” You can begin your testimony after a formal introduction is made. You will have two to three minutes depending on where you are speaking. Many people feel more comfortable reading a prepared statement. This enables you to touch on specific points you might forget once you are sitting at the testimony table. Remember to speak slowly, clearly, and into the microphone provided. Want to see how you did? You can watch yourself on your local public access channel; air times are provided by the clerk.

What if they ask me questions?
Sometimes members of the Commission or Council will ask you a question about your testimony. The proper response to any member asking a question is to acknowledge the person asking the question and then answer the question: “Thank you, Mayor/Councilor (name).” or “Thank you, Mr. (Madame) Chair.”

Everyone gets nervous, even seasoned professionals. Our best advice is to be calm and to stick to your notes or prepared statement.