Client Success Stories
Your organization, your ability to serve customers, your future in California are significantly impacted by the Governor’s Office, agencies and departments, Legislature. TGG’s experienced advocates have – over the course of decades of productive, respectful exchanges – built trust with key individuals and get results.
There are no guarantees, of course…but understand what we do through the lens of a few recent successes. References and details provided to those seeking TGG’s representation.
2020 client achievements with TGG:
It begins with that first handshake…expensive and complex, a deluge of new regulations confronted the new general manager of one of the state’s largest special districts. TGG quickly arranged and facilitated personal visits with all State Water Board members and senior executives; with Dept of Water Resources executives and with Dept. of Conservation leaders. In less than 6 weeks. Followed by mutual understanding on issues and collaboration for compliances terms and funding.
Procurements, there is no second place…TGG was part of our tech client’s positioning and pursuit for a multi-million-dollar, multi-year RFP to deliver and operate a better healthcare management system. Competing over the course of two years, we won the contract and displaced an entrenched incumbent. Deploying carefully designed and deliberate teamwork, we coordinated intel-gathering, introductory conversations and presentations.
Another TGG client was new to California – A Back East commercial lines insurer pursuing a database re-design and operation RFP. We introduced the team to state managers, obtained a clear understanding of goals and aspirations…combined the client’s deep experience from other states with our California expertise. Result? A win.
Tight state budgets still have money…In tough times, persistence and shoe leather win. The water infrastructure district was seeking more than $50 million in project funding in a tight year. We worked together to schedule conversations with decision makers in both the executive and legislative branches, researched and wrote messaging, conducted tailored follow-ups, assuaged last-minute doubts. Appropriation made.
Coalitions do heavy lifting – even when the objective is lighter than air… A group of companies seeking to elevate legislative and regulatory knowledge of hydrogen end-uses selected TGG as their regulatory partner. With the immediate advocacy needs to finish the launch and get California Energy Commission funding out the door, we went to work immediately to create a new association simultaneously with pursuing better acceptance for the need to develop hydrogen production and refueling infrastructure. Within a few short months the membership has met with dozens of legislators and regulatory officials creating renewed interest in the promise of the hydrogen economy. Association members won 29 of the 36 refueling stations receiving grant funding in 2020. While there is still tremendous work to be done, our efforts have markedly increased awareness for the solutions and benefits of the hydrogen as an energy and the potential of the maturing end uses members of this association produce.
Curing legislative amnesia…Term-limited Legislatures lose their institutional knowledge annually and TGG can help keep the opposition from reworking established deals. Leveraging the chaos of pandemic fiscal issues, detractors of California’s Cap-and-Trade program launched an assault to rewrite the program in a budget trailer bill. TGG spearheaded rallying a major coalition of associations, businesses, and utilities to early opposition and direct conversations with legislators, staff, and the administration. Ultimately, the budget negotiations stripped these detrimental provisions and we successfully preserved policy agreements from a previous administration.
Even a done deal must cross the finish line…a medium-sized city with recent financial difficulties and an impaired water supply joined with TGG over the course of two years to win a highly competitive $10-million grant for a treatment facility, as well as a 1% loan. Then a 20-year-old litigation settlement needed to be negotiated with two state departments, approved by a state agency and the governor’s office…in a few months, so the funds could be awarded. TGG organized briefings, carefully explained interwoven issues and stakes and communicated with all concerned. Re-settled and settled.
$120 million in grants and loans for infrastructure and we’re still going strong…one of California’s largest cities and TGG for the past 5 years teamed up to coordinate a master plan, a winning ballot measure for a rate increase, multiple meetings and presentations to state officials, negotiations on a portfolio of grants and loans that ultimately added to north of $120 million. Now, we’re crafting a new master plan and an expanded funding portfolio.
Cleaning up one of the nation’s largest Super Fund sites. A Los Angeles-area groundwater clean-up agency merited a State Water Board waiver of a Prop. 68 grant cap for its $20-million project to continue to remediate legacy pollution and to stop migrating contaminants. We worked with the client, water board staff and the Board to educate and to obtain approval.
Persistance & shoe leather ROI for clients. After three years of patiently making our positive points to the State Water Board members and senior staff, we won the unanimous express support of the Board to establish a stakeholder – staff working group to mutually review and develop regulatory programs. Stakeholders from local governments and the private sector have significant water quality and water rights expertise that could assist regulators in more precise programs that contain costs. One of our adviocates is now working with the Vice Chair and a Member on the groundrules for 2021.
TGG advocates serve our communities, and the Firm provides significant support for diverse nonprofits and causes.
For example, Jack Gualco was recently honored for the Firm’s commitment to Hispanas Organized for Political Equity (HOPE), and we’re pleased to share this 2020 citation:
These individuals consistently contribute their time and expertise to the HOPE Leadership Institute curriculum. Their contributions include leading dynamic workshops, sharing the latest data and trends, providing opportunities for field-based learning, and challenging participants to think and act in new ways.
They are recognized experts in their respective fields and find value in training Latinas through the HOPE Leadership Institute. We are proud to have these individuals affiliated with HOPE and acknowledge that it is their participation and commitment to the Institute that make it truly unique and exemplary.
Your voice heard and heeded by California leaders. The State’s most disadvantaged community college district desperately needed to become a pilot project for wireless broadband infrastructure expansion. Working as a team, TGG informed State agency senior executives and arranged productive meetings with decision-makers in the Governor’s Office, Dept. of Finance (where the college had already been awarded to grants for innovation), Dept. of Technology, Public Utilities Commission and, most recently, testimony to the Board of Food & Agriculture. We are also working with the UC Office of the President to obtain funding. TGG founded and leads the AgTED Roundtable, which is also assisting.
Corner Office Conversations
With significant intellectual property and global reach, our clients often share innovation experts and programs with California Executive and Legislative leaders. The Gualco Group, Inc. in 2019 facilitated productive conversations with the governor and several of his senior staff, agency secretaries, department directors and board/commission members. Also, Constitutional Officers such as controller and treasurer. And Senate and Assembly committee chairs and consultants.
Show Stoppers: Water Tax and Senate Bill 1
In the Legislative Arena, the battle usually goes with those who bring the most friends. Coalescing coalitions is a strength at The Gualco Group, Inc.
To stop the drinking water tax and to fund drinking water for disadvantaged communities, we worked for our clients to help organize and play a key role in the three year-long push to tax drinking water and then pivoted to legislation that created the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. (To follow up, we are working with two stakeholder groups to launch the program.) Efforts to protect against any incursion will continue.
A struggle over legislation can go all the way to the governor’s pen…does the chief executive sign or veto? Senate Bill 1, which unfortunately would have endangered complex water management negotiations while providing no new environmental protections, was vetoed after another year-long struggle. US Sen. Dianne Feinstein and a host of other key leaders joined in, concurring that there was no need for State legislation to blunt any environmental threats from federal agencies.
Quadruple Budget Funding in 5 Years
To advance the worthy and far-reaching California Charities’ social service programs, we joined with the “One CA” advocacy coalition to secure critical funding for immigration services. Catholic Charities is widely acclaimed for its social, educational and legal services for immigrants and refugees.
Collaborating with the governor’s office, departments and the Legislature, we achieved $65 million in funding for Fiscal Year 2019-20, up from $15 million in 2014.
Coastal Desalination Facility Gets Dedicated New Law
Gov. Newsom signed Assembly Bill 1752 (Petrie-Norris) in September, authorizing a project delivery method and clarifying funding for the South Coast Water District’s new desalination plant in southern Orange County. We drafted, found an appropriate bill to amend, a top notch author, obtained legislative support, and ramped up advocacy in just a few months this summer…as the first year of the Session was drawing to a close.
The new plant will reduce the region’s 90% dependence on external water sources with a resilient, environmentally sustainable supply delivered via innovative, new buried ocean intakes. Working with local supporters and environmentalists, the bill was quickly passed and signed into law.
Generous Tax Credit for Research & Manufacturing Client’s New Facility
Secured a $2.5 million award to site a new research and manufacturing facility on California. With generous offers from multiple states we were able to help our client receive one of the highest per employee awards in 2019 ($37,000/employee) from the California Competes Tax Credit which will lead to over 60 new high-wage high-skill jobs in California.
$10-Million Water Treatment Plant Grant + Loan
The Dept. of Water Resources and State Water Resources Control Board in less than a year supported and funded, through grants and loans, respectively, the City of Antioch’s brackish water treatment plant. We worked to ensure all regulators understood the co-benefits of reducing the impact on Delta habitat, saving energy and a reliable water supply. The final push involved several meetings and complex presentation materials, followed by a myriad of successfully answered technical questions.
Fast Start for Sustainable Water Infrastructure
A Central Valley water district with a long history of innovation is seeking Executive Branch support for an essential piece of infrastructure to enable Gov. Newsom’s Water Resilience Portfolio and Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.
On short notice as the new budget season gets underway, we were able in a single day to secure briefings with senior executives in the governor’s office, Dept. of Finance, CalEPA and Dept. of Water Resources. A work in progress for 2020….off to a stellar understanding and excellent relationships.
Broad Coalitions, Big Lifts
For a significant energy trade group, we help to lead and coordinate long-term advocacy across multiple agencies and the Governor’s Office.
Example #1, CVSALTS (or the Central Valley Salinity Alternatives for Long-Term Solutions), where we assisted in winning State Water Board approval of two complex Basin Plan Amendments to enable the 12-year stakeholders’ effort to mitigate nitrates and salt, to deliver drinking water to disadvantaged communities and to remediate the groundwater supply.
Example #2, what the Natural Resources Agency secretary termed one of the Newsom Administration’s top water environmental projects of its inaugural year – the wetlands protections built into the Waters of the State amendments approved by the State Water Board. Again, the product of a diverse industry coalition that worked for five years with state scientists and engineers to negotiate a compromise that protected all concerned.
Advocacy for the Public Good
The Gualco Group, Inc. brings together experts from nonprofits, trade groups, regulatory agencies and academia in our pro bono Food Waste Roundtable and Ag Tech & Economic Development (AgTED) Roundtable. Both were founded in 2013 with about 15-20 volunteer senior-level participants who exchange essential information and help one another’s programs.
The Food Waste Roundtable reduces food waste and feeds hungry people with the CA Assn. of Food Banks, CA League of Food Producers, CA Farm Bureau Federation, CalRecycle, Californians Against Waste, UC Davis College of Ag & Environmental Sciences and others. As one example, we helped create and fund the first research into the nature of on-farm food loss.
AgTED directs its collaboration into deploying agricultural technology to promote careers in rural San Joaquin Valley communities. Collaborators include UC Division of Ag & Natural Resources, Farm Bureau, CA Dept. of Technology, CA Dept. of Food & Ag, Farm of the Future at West Hills College Coalinga and more. We are working with the Governor’s Office to deliver wireless broadband to impacted rural areas…because no ag tech works without broadband.
A Voice Heard & Heeded by State Water Board
Would an amended regulation governing water quality lab testing effectively eliminate small facilities? Would the State Water Resources Control Board – after several years of process including dozens of stakeholder meetings – direct staff to re-engage with stakeholders? Could TGG provide a voice for an esteemed irrigation district that would persuade an unanimous board?
Big Win a Vendor New to California
NFP Health is a boutique brokerage in the business of designing and operating advanced technology, state-based insurance exchanges, mainly for agents and employers. NFP has plenty of success offering complex products with cutting-edge security and automated upgrades…but it was east of the Mississippi River. Competing for a CoveredCA service and up against an entrenched incumbent, as well as several California firms, NFP asked around…and found one advocacy firm who could quickly assess the competitive environment, furnish insights on tailored messaging and conduct intense preparations. Results?
An unprecedented win.
NOTE: We would be pleased to provide full details to all of the above.
…the kind of success that belongs to you @ TGG!
Clients We’ve Worked With
- Amador Water Agency
- California Association of Winegrape Growers
- California Catholic Conference
- California Council for Environmental and Economic Balance
- California Independent Petroleum Association
- Catholic Charities
- City of Antioch
- City of Fresno
- City of Santa Cruz
- Deloitte Consulting, LLP
- Kern County Water Agency
- Kings River Conservation District
- Kings River Water Association
- Long Beach Water Department
- Modesto Irrigation District
- Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency
- San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District
- San Gabriel Basin Water Quality Authority
- Stanislaus Regional Water Authority
- United Technologies Corp.
- United Water Conservation District
- West Hills Community College District
- Zone 7 Water Agency