Wise Guy

Posted March 18, 2003 at 6:44pm

Former Senate aide Nick Wise and his six-person firm, Wise & Associates, has signed up several new clients, including a company concerned about the taxation of halon — a low-toxicity, chemically stable compound often used for fire and explosion protection.

Wise is helping Toledo, Ohio-based FRC International, a major importer and recycler of halon, navigate complicated taxation issues associated with halon. Recycled halon can be used in fire-resistant materials for a wide range of industries, from aviation to defense.

But unlike newly manufactured halon, which can harm the Earth’s ozone layer, recycled halon is said to be environmentally friendly.

Wise said while the Environmental Protection Agency has encouraged the importation and recycling of existing halon stockpiles, the Internal Revenue Service assessed a tax making halon recycling cost-prohibitive.

“The folks at FRC trusted the EPA when they said recycled halon wouldn’t be subject to taxation,” said Wise.

“This is a small company that produces

something important for national security.”

Wise, a former chief of staff for Sen. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio), has signed up several clients from the Buckeye State. He is advising the Toledo Legislative Consortium on appropriations for job training, transportation, brownfield development, and water and port projects.

He is also representing the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Ohio Board of Regents on appropriations for job training. The firm is also lobbying for Cleveland-based EmployOn Inc., a human resources and job-placement firm, on appropriations for job training.

In telecommunications, Wise will represent Philadelphia-based Comcast, the nation’s largest cable provider, on antitrust merger issues.

The Cincinnati native said his firm’s members have deep Ohio roots, with experience working in the offices of both of the state’s Senators — as well as the governor — and the Justice and Energy departments. The firm has offices in Washington and Columbus.

“We are an Ohio-based firm and although our practice is diversified and we represent a number of national companies, we also represent a number of companies and educational institutions based in Ohio,” Wise said. “We have a real affection for the state.”

Here are some other recent filings of new clients on K Street reported to the Clerk of the House and Secretary of the Senate. The filings were culled by PoliticalMoneyLine.com:

Agriculture

Schramm Williams & Associates is representing California Citrus Mutual, a citrus industry trade association, on Department of Agriculture regulations allowing the resumption of the importation of Spanish clementines. Last October, the department lifted an 11-month ban on the entry of Spanish citrus into the United States after medfly larvae showed up in some shipments.

U.S. citrus interests, especially in California and Florida, have been concerned that the Spanish government has not instituted enough fail-safe practices to ensure the meddlesome medfly will not show up in U.S.-bound shipments.

Smith Martin & Boyette has signed on Domino Foods for sugar quota and re-export program issues.

Communications/Technology

Infotech Strategies has signed on Earthlink to represent the Internet service provider on broadband competition issues. Infotech Strategies is also lobbying on behalf of Time Domain Corp. of Huntsville, Ala., on proposed Federal Communication Commission rules affecting ultrawide band spectrum technologies.

The firm also signed on VI Technologies on Medicare reimbursement issues.

Energy

Lobbyist Hunter Johnston and his father, former Sen. J. Bennett Johnston (D-La.), are representing the global power generation firm InterGen of Burlington, Mass. Johnston & Associates will lobby on general power issues for the power generation giant, which has a number of generation interests around the world. InterGen is a Shell-Betschel joint venture.

Transportation

Venable Baetjer Howard & Civiletti is lobbying for Globe Aviation Services Corp. on aviation security issues related to the Homeland Security bill passed last fall. Irving, Texas-based Globe Aviation Services provides security and baggage screening at airports nationwide.

Piper Rudnick is representing the Liberian International Ship & Corporate Registry to promote the maintenance of U.S.-owned and U.S.-based Liberian ships.