Complex Rules Govern Association Relationships With Federal Workers

By: Jim Wilson and Hugh Webster

In the wake of the GSA meeting scandal, the rules affecting interactions between associations and federal government employees are under new scrutiny. Association leaders need to hone their knowledge and keep an eye out for changes that may be coming.

Participation by federal government employees in association meetings and programs brings substantial benefits, whether the federal worker serves in a leadership position at the association or attends a program to share and receive relevant information and viewpoints. However, after the recent spending scandals at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), Congress and others have scrutinized government-employee participation at meetings and events and the costs associated with it. Therefore, now is a good time to examine existing and proposed rules and regulations that affect the relationship between the association community and federal employees....