Decisions are being made every day in state capitals and in Washington, DC that materially impact our clients’ interests. Based just steps from the New Jersey State House, the Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department offers a broad range of services and experience to our clients on state and federal legislative affairs, regulatory affairs and departmental actions, administrative law, business incentives, government procurement and contracting, and political and campaign finance compliance.
Our Government & Regulatory Affairs Department develops effective strategies to navigate the complex legislative and regulatory processes at the state and federal levels. With our extensive knowledge of both the political climate and regulatory landscape, we provide cutting-edge advocacy to ensure that our clients’ voices are heard at the right time and by the right people.
The Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department was selected as a “Top 3” lobbying firm in the state in the most recent NJBIZ Reader Ranking Awards. The New Jersey Law Journal recently reported that Gibbons was ranked the state’s #1 lawyer-lobbying firm by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission for the twelfth year in a row. Attorneys in the Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department have held key positions in various governmental agencies and as staff members for a variety of federal and state elected officials.
Areas of Focus
State Legislative Affairs
The Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department reviews and analyzes for our clients hundreds of bill introduced by the New Jersey Legislature. We identify and evaluate legislation of operational or financial significance – both positive and negative – and create strategies to achieve our clients’ objectives.
Our approach often involves providing strategic counsel on the political and policymaking climate; preparing comprehensive advocacy materials; drafting bill language and amendments; meeting with opposition groups to understand their concerns and seek compromise; and securing votes as the bills proceed through the legislative process. We possess strong relationships with members of the New Jersey Legislature, Governor’s Office, Cabinet, and their respective staffs. These connections with the Legislature and Governor allow us to interact with the officials involved in every phase of the legislative process.
State Regulatory Affairs
As a key component of our practice, our Trenton-based attorneys provide comprehensive regulatory counseling and advocacy. We have represented clients before state agencies and in enforcement actions brought by agencies or departments. We are familiar with the unique regulations governing departmental actions and guide our clients through the maze that is government bureaucracy.
Our regulatory clients include, for example, utility companies with issues before the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU); developers appearing before the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) and the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (NJDCA); and businesses seeking departmental approvals for new service deliveries.
State Administrative Law
The attorneys in our Government & Regulatory Affairs Department are familiar with and understand the state’s Administrative Procedures Act. We counsel clients on the rulemaking process and the ability to comment and change regulations before they take effect. We have also represented clients in contested cases before the New Jersey Office of Administrative Law and in appeals of final agency decisions.
Business Incentives and Economic Development
Our team provides strategic business incentive and procurement counseling to various clients with interests before the state of New Jersey and its related instrumentalities. We work closely with businesses of all sizes interested in securing tax credits, business incentive packages, grants, and/or favorable financing terms from the state for purposes of corporate relocation or job creation and retention. We routinely appear before the Governor’s senior staff, as well as the leaders of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) and the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) to present our clients’ projects and advocate for state support and application approval.
Federal Legislative and Regulatory Affairs
Our Government & Regulatory Affairs Department is one of just a handful of New Jersey firms with a presence on Capitol Hill and before federal agencies. Interacting regularly with members of the New Jersey Congressional delegation and their senior staffs, our lawyers have extensive knowledge of the committee and subcommittee structure in Congress, as well as the procedures governing the annual budget and appropriations processes. We routinely monitor federal regulations and grant programs and advise clients on the best path forward to address their needs in connection with these regulations and programs. We possess longstanding relationships in Washington and help clients in a hands-on fashion not only to navigate the federal landscape but to ensure their voices are heard.
Gibbons develops and implements strategies prior to the issuance of requests for proposal or qualifications, as well as in response to these requests. We alert the corporate entities we represent early about these opportunities, present them with detailed background and analysis as to the government incentives or programs at issue, and counsel them throughout the pursuit of the opportunities.
Campaign Finance Compliance
As the top-ranked lawyer-lobbying firm in New Jersey, we provide guidance through the complexities of political legal compliance. The Gibbons team counsels clients making campaign contributions to ensure that they do not violate the state’s robust ethics and pay-to-play laws. We also assist clients with their compliance obligations under the state’s legislative and governmental process disclosure laws. In addition, our lawyers have drafted detailed conflict-of-interest policies, based on New Jersey’s ethics laws, for companies with employees who are running for public office.
Cable & Telecommunications
The cable and telecommunications sector is undergoing rapid changes, and governmental entities are constantly reviewing laws and regulations to keep pace. Gibbons works with a variety of wired and wireless telecommunications companies to address legislative and regulatory issues that impact these industries. In addition to our longstanding relationships at the BPU, we utilize our knowledge of administrative and governmental processes to assist with rate cases, rulemakings, and other matters.
Energy & Renewables
In addition to our work on traditional energy matters, Gibbons represents both well-established utilities and start-ups in the area of renewable energy. Our experience allows us to effectively advocate on issues that are both germane and unique to the utilities and energy fields. Because of the distinctive qualities of the renewable energy sector, our work often requires interactions with our colleagues across the firm on transactional matters and real property issues, which is a testament to the strong relationships and collective knowledge among the attorneys who work in this arena.
Health & Human Services
The state and federal governments’ continued focus on healthcare policy is creating an ever more complex statutory and regulatory environment. The Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department is exceptionally qualified to represent healthcare entities and human services providers. We are able to raise their profiles in the State House and on Capitol Hill, advance their priority initiatives, and analyze the impact of ongoing legislative changes for our clients. We also develop, then implement, lobbying strategies to address their concerns.
We often testify on bills before the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee; the Assembly Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee; the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee; and the Assembly and Senate Budget Committees. We possess strong relationships with senior staff in the Governor’s Office and with the Commissioners of Health and Senior Services and Human Services. At the federal level, we are one of just a handful of New Jersey lobbying firms with a strong presence on Capitol Hill, where we represent several healthcare entities on federal legislative and regulatory matters.
With four public research universities, seven state colleges, fifteen independent schools, and 19 community colleges, New Jersey is a national leader in higher education. The Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department provides a range of educational institutions with advice and representation in the areas of state and federal legislative lobbying, regulatory issues, and procurement counseling. We have particular experience working on behalf of state institutions of higher learning and in connection with complex state laws and statutes impacting higher education, such as the Higher Education Reorganization Act of 1994, the June 2009 Reorganization Plan (No. 002-2009), and the New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Education Restructuring Act of 2012.
Land Use and Environment
New Jersey is one of the most environmentally regulated states in the country, and, given its 21 counties and 565 municipalities, land use approvals can be a challenge. The Government & Regulatory Affairs Department continuously monitors pending legislation, new laws, and regulations in this field. Our team has longstanding relationships with the leaders of the NJBPU and NJDEP, legislative staff, and the Governor’s Office, which allow us to advocate forcefully and knowledgeably for our clients.
Liquor Licensing and Alcoholic Beverage Control
Every state has its own laws and regulations allowing for the sale of alcoholic beverages. New Jersey issues liquor licenses by population, New York allows the sale of beer in convenience stores, and Pennsylvania has state-run liquor stores. Not knowing the jurisdictional rules can be both costly and time-consuming. Members of the Gibbons Government & Regulatory Affairs Department work in tandem with our colleagues throughout the firm as part of the Liquor Licensing & Alcoholic Beverage Control Team to represent clients in the full range of issues related to alcoholic beverage control and liquor licenses, at both the state and local levels. We guide clients through the licensing process, assist clients with ongoing compliance issues, and represent entities in enforcement actions.
Transportation & Infrastructure
Local, state, and national infrastructure is on the minds of policy makers and private sector leaders across the county. Gibbons attorneys advise both public and private sector clients on pending and enacted policies on both the state and federal levels. We regularly monitor the proceedings of the state and federal legislative committees with jurisdiction over transportation and interact with the New Jersey and United States Departments of Transportation. We have counseled clients on public-private partnerships (P3s), state transportation matters regarding the New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund, federal programs under the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, and large infrastructure projects involving the New Jersey Energy Resilience Bank, New Jersey Infrastructure Bank (formerly NJEIT), and federal programs, including the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 and the federal TIGER and INFRA Discretionary Grant Programs.