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NBWA overwhelmed by grassroots efforts.

An intensive grassroots lobbying effort by wholesaler members of the National Beer Wholesalers Association has yielded 109 signatures on a letter from Congress demanding a General Accounting Office (GAO) investigation of alleged lobbying activities by the Office for Substance Abuse Prevention (OSAP).

The letter was spearheaded by Congressman Ralph Hall (R-TX) and David Dreier (R-CA). NBWA had originally hoped to acquire 50 signatures on the letter which was mailed to Comptroller General of the United States Charles Bowsher, However, due to the response of the membership, more than double that number was achieved.

"The response of our members and of the state association executives to our call to action was overwhelming," reported NBWA president Ron Sarasin. "And the results speak for themselves. With one out of every four Representatives signing the letter, this is, without a doubt, an unqualified success. "

According to Sarasin, NBWA has long contended that OSAP is engaging in direct and indirect lobbying in contravention to the Federal Appropriations Act. OSAP publications, such as Prevention Pipeline, often urge readers to lobby Congress on specific legislation. Additionally, OSAP provides funding and logistical support for advocacy groups, and, Sarasin reported, underwrote the cost of publishing an Activist Guide, a pamphlet distributed by the Advocacy Institute and the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

"For too long, OSAP has thumbed its nose at Congress and the laws of the land," Sarasin declared. "It's time they were held accountable. The number of signatures on this letter clearly shows that we're getting the message through to Congress that something is very, very wrong with the way OSAP does business."

Sarasin also said that NBWA will assist the GAO in the ongoing investigation in "any way we can."
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Title Annotation:National Beer Wholesalers Association
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Jun 15, 1992
Words:286
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