At Lewis-Burke Associates LLC (Lewis-Burke) we appreciate the effort and the risks undertaken by clients when they develop, propose and invest their own resources and prestige in high risk, innovative, and potentially controversial state of the art research projects. Lewis-Burke has the knowledge and the experience to help in the successful advocacy of such ventures. Lewis-Burke can design and implement the strategy necessary to move a project through both the executive branch budget process and then the Congressional budget process so that funding is provided and the project moves forward. Equally important, Lewis-Burke’s experienced staff can help an organization anticipate and prepare for shifting budget and policy trends, allowing them to act rather than react to Federal policy changes.
Working on behalf of a university client, Lewis-Burke successfully crafted and executed a lobbying strategy to integrate an established Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Flight Test Center (FTC) into the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Flight Test Site program through the FAA Reauthorization Act extension. Leveraging understanding of the FAA reauthorization process and extensive knowledge of the university’s capabilities, Lewis-Burke drafted an amendment to the FAA Reauthorization Act, and developed a proposal for congressional delegation staff to use when discussing the request with Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee staff. The legislative proposal demonstrated the importance of the UAS FTC in the FAA Flight Test Site program, including its historical impact on and relationship with the FAA and UAS research, development, test and evaluation. Lewis-Burke complemented the lobbying strategy with outreach to the FAA to ensure effective implementation of the amendment. While the comprehensive reauthorization of the FAA was delayed, Lewis-Burke leveraged existing support for adoption of the UAS FTC amendment into the FAA authorization extension bill. The FAA extension, including the UAS FTC amendment, was signed into law in July 2016, integrating the university’s UAS FTC into the FAA Flight Test Site program.