Stop for a minute and consider the value of CDRC. Think about the value of having a strong, respected, powerful voice in Sacramento. Think about the value of having a group of committed volunteers analyzing and advocating for sound ADR policy. Then think about what your practice would be like without CDRC around to be your voice. If you do that, I think you will make the case for yourself to be part of CDRC.
In this recovering economy, we are all facing tough decisions about what to support and what to drop. Memberships fall into the category of nice, but not necessary, and it is easy to drop ACR, the ABA Dispute Resolution Section, SCMA, the Northern California Mediation Society, your local community mediation center, or an ADR section of your local bar. It is easy to drop membership in the CDRC too. However, CDRC does something that none of the other ADR organizations will or can do for you: It represents your interests and the interests of theCaliforniapublic in dispute resolution choices in Sacramento.
Regardless of what the economy does, lawmakers, policy makers, politicians, and special interests continue their dance in Sacramento. There are plenty of groups that would like to see ADR derailed, minimized, marginalized, taxed, or regulated out of existence. Even if that were not the case, ignorance generates enough business by itself. You would be amazed at the number of bills introduced by well-meaning legislators that display complete ignorance about ADR. Since most of the members of theCalifornialegislature are not lawyers, they do not appreciate the effect their proposed laws have on ADR practice and procedure. It’s important that CDRC is there to help them get it right.
If you are a community mediator, your work is probably supported by DRPA funding. This is a state-mandated program paid for by part of the court filing fees. Because of the severe downsizing of the state government, each year DRPA funding comes under intense scrutiny. There are plenty of interests that would like to see DRPA eliminated and the funding returned to the state or at least re-directed to basic court costs. CDRC was instrumental in getting DRPA funding passed into law. It continues as the only organized advocate for continued DRPA funding in Sacramento. Without CDRC, there would be no DRPA. This is why CDRC is asking each DRPA contractor to consider supporting CDRC with 2% of its budget.
Your membership in CDRC pays for the cost of a lobbyist and supports the volunteer efforts of people like Jim Madison, who spends countless hours analyzing and thinking about the implications of lower court judicial decisions, proposed statutes, and regulations issuing from all sorts of state agencies.
CDRC is respected inSacramentoas a voice for ADR, not for individuals or companies seeking special entitlements or “gimmies”. As a result, when CDRC weighs in for you and your ADR practice, policy makers listen.
CDRC doesn’t give out premiums or offer members anything special. CDRC does something far more valuable: CDRC protects ADR in California.
Douglas Noll – 2012 President