SFATA extends our national programming into states with the help of passionate members who organize locally to promote SFATA policy positions at the state and local level, while encouraging activism among local companies toward the federal priorities.
Over time, our state chapter program has emerged as a tremendous way to disseminate complex information quickly to our member companies around the country and we consider the extra time our “Chapter Leaders” put in to be most admirable. In return, our Chapter Leaders benefit from first-round intel on our national efforts and additional learning and networking opportunities as we work to make them seen as “go-to” experts on SFATA in their home states.
Under our new 2016 By-laws, these locally-organized groups of vapor businesses are known either as “Accredited” or “Affiliated” state chapters.
Accredited State Chapters
are a direct extension of SFATA, who operate under strict SFATA guidelines and depend on us for all administrative support, including banking, accounting, contracting, etc. These types of chapters were the original construct conceived early on and they function well in many states across the nation. Where a state chapter’s participating companies are willing and able to provide additional funds to SFATA above membership dues for the national programming needs, we may retain professional services to focus on more local issues in those states. Participation is not compulsory for any SFATA member in those states where SFATA State Chapters have been organized. However, only SFATA members are able to participate and benefit from these local meetings and possibly state lobbyist representation as the entirety of their operating costs are borne by SFATA membership dues. At least six SFATA General Members are required to start and continue an Accredited State Chapter, as well as approval by the Board of Directors.
Affiliated Independent State Chapters
(aka “Affiliated Independent Groups”) operate as separate legal entities. They handle their own incorporation requirements and filings, banking, contracting, accounting, compliance and reporting activities, and branding of their group. For those states where vapor companies prefer more autonomy and want to include local vapor companies who are not SFATA member companies in their advocacy efforts, where local groups have already established themselves in their state, or where the group members desire to also affiliate with other organizations together, SFATA offers this alternative “Affiliate” state chapter option. There are many benefits to affiliating with a known brand such as SFATA, but we also offer a list of tangible benefits to our Affiliate chapters in return for an annual fee and a signed service agreement which require following some basic guidelines to protect the SFATA brand in the state. Interested independent groups must be approved by the SFATA Board of Directors.
Both types of Chapters benefit from working with our Director of State Chapter Relations, Schell Hammel
, who is happy to discuss helping vapor companies become organized in their states as one of these two types of chapters. If you would like to know more about forming or participating in a state chapter where your business operates, please contact Schell Hammel today at Schell@sfata.org