Penry Spins Through Revolving Door

Exiting public service, at least for now, soon-to-be former state Senator Josh Penry takes his first real job off the public dole–going to work for an energy astro-turfing firm: EIS Solutions.

EIS Solutions handles government affairs and public relations for companies involved in the energy industry.

EIS Solutions appears to be a bit of a family-affair: another name associated with this company is Tim Pollard, brother-in-law to Penry, now himself spinning through the lobbyist door.  

Astroturfing the Western Slope?

EIS Solutions use to have a readily searchable website. Although most of it was behind a ‘clients only’ password protection–there was some information for the public to peruse.  

Not so much anymore.  Although the company is still in existence–and its principals are still touting less regulations, more drilling, digging and tax benefits for their wealthy benefactors–learning about whom exactly they represent has become a bit more murky.

But Twitty archives.  The following comes from a .pdf file (currently available here) that provides a glimpse into some of the goals and tactics of this corporate-controlled ‘grass roots’ firm.

EIS Solutions–which was founded mid-decade in Grand Junction by former XCel Energy executive Wade Haerle–specializes in creating ‘citizen’ advocacy such as:

•Organize public hearing attendance

•Facilitate “on message” testimony

•Post-hearing follow-up with supporters

•Maximize positive news coverage

One of the projects that EIS Solutions took on was creating a mob of angry roughnecks to push back against the sensible, and minor, oil and gas regulations that Colorado recently began to implement.  Who can forget the ‘Don’t Rule Us Out Stickers’ bought and paid for, no doubt, by Big Oil and their corporate astroturfers.  

“Our core competency is grassroots coalition building. EIS Solutions connects the goal of CEOs and senior management to people on the ground to ensure that projects come to fruition. On a project that’s worth millions or billions of dollars of revenue after a client gets it to market, it’s critical to successfully navigate the NEPA process and avoid delays. We know NEPA. So, we can speed the process and save our clients significant costs. And we shorten the time to get a permit, so our clients can start their projects and begin getting a return on their investment. In short, we create a path to advocacy.”

Think those concerned about water quality might pose a problem for your hopes to mine for uranium?  Who you gonna call?

Why, EIS-Solutions of course!

In fact, Mr. Penry’s new lobbying firm takes some pride in their ability to fool policy-makers and the public about their true intentions, for instance they tout this apparent mark of their success:

“Looking through the form letters, from environmental groups, they’re concerned about environmental impacts. A lot of the individual letters were from local folks supportive of the mine and interested in the economic benefits of the mine,” said David Boyd from the BLM.

And while it has become a little more difficult to track down particulars of this energy consulting firm, bullshit still stinks.  You can hide it behind some bunting and spin, you can spray all the perfume you want: astroturf may look ‘green’ but its readily apparent what it really is–plastic manufactured crap.    


39 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Ralphie says:

    I had been searching all morning.  I might cite your post in my blog article tonight.

    No surprise Wade’s involved.

    I remember when he was a Democrat.

    • ClubTwitty says:

      I am currently out-of-state traveling and don’t have most of my information…I do have a bit of a dossier on EIS Solutions and a few of their primary peeps however, that I will now have to update on my return.  

      EIS Solutions is not the only entity engaged in ‘opposition monitoring.’

  2. Ellie says:

    Josh will have a problem lobbying unless the D’s changed the law in the last two years and I missed it.  It will be interesting to see how he manages to get around that little technicality if he shows up under the dome.

    • Car 31 says:

      in her move to lobby for the Gov-elect?

      • Awen says:

        It has no impact on people who work in the governor’s cabinet, in part because they are not legally considered lobbyists. I don’t know why that is, but that’s what I’ve read.

        • HikingTheAppalachianTrail says:

          Amendment 41 doesn’t mention the word “lobby”.  

          It says that a former legislator can’t represent a client before the GA or Gov. for money…

          I don’t know why it wouldn’t apply to Scanlan.  She won’t be a part of the Gov’s cabinet.

          • droll says:

            Many of the ’06 legislators did.  To my knowledge we don’t have a firm precedent.

            Plant would’ve possibly had a problem talking Ritter OR the GA.  Because he was “representing” the GEO (technically whatever its name was at that time), not Ritter.

            But this leads to the greater question of what Scanlon’s position is exactly.  She could probably coordinate and send someone else to speak.  As long as she’s being paid by the Gov’s office, for the Gov’s office she wouldn’t be “representing” anyone but Hickenlooper himself, so she would be able to speak to him about pending legislation.

            It’s not that I hate citizen initiatives, I just hate poorly written ones.  😛

            • HikingTheAppalachianTrail says:

              He went straight from the GA to the Office of Curly Light Bulbs.  

              • droll says:

                There is always a seat or two resigned days or weeks before the official term ends.  You pick some random person to have the seat for the few days.  At the end of 2006 there were many, many resignations that excluded people from the A41 rules.  It was apparently a lot of fun for people at the capitol who happened to live in those districts.

                The thought was that Plant wouldn’t have violated the rule anyway.  We never found out because he technically resigned the seat.

                I’d pull the article, but it’s paid archive now, or in the RMN.

                If you don’t believe me, feel free to post the decision that it was OK and I’ll apologize for being mistaken.  A decision would be public record, while the lack of one is impossible to post.

    • redstateblues says:

      Penry is going to be a Jane Norton-style non-lobbyist lobbyist overseer/consultant. Probably not technically a lobbyist under the law.

    • 1854 GOP says:

      Penry can keep himself plenty busy handling municipal approvals and navigating the Federal permitting approval/process for EIS clients.  Plenty of dollars to be had beyond the GA . . . . Plus, what is so wrong with going to work with/for a family member?  It sort of happens a lot in America.  

      • ClubTwitty says:

        The general idea of astroturf is repugnant.

        Our core competency is grassroots coalition building. EIS Solutions connects the goal of CEOs and senior management to people on the ground to ensure that projects come to fruition.


        Go CEOs and senior management!  Your wish is my command–Want to raise doubts about poisoned wells?  Pretend that protected wildlife starves babies?  

        Think that allowing more public wealth to flow out-of-state with less return to the state and American taxpayers (through, for instance, mining reform or fair severance taxes) are great ideas, and any regulations for public health and environmental protection are a drag?  EIS–Your Astroturf Solution.  

  3. Awen says:

    Is this someone who is married to a sister of Penry, or is this someone who is a brother to his (now, or soon to be) ex-wife?

  4. ClubTwitty says:

    Mr. Pollard use to opine occasionally in the GJ Free Press. His bio line indicated he worked for a ‘public affairs firm,’ which is (or was) EIS Solutions.  

    In one fine piece he calls those who think the public’s oil and gas commission should represent more than just industry insiders, or that drinking water sources and wildlife be protected in the energy onslaught, ‘jihadists.’  I would provide the quote, but rules prohibit such.  Do the archive search…

  5. ardy39 says:

    Thanks for this update.

    Glad I know you.

  6. Republican 36 says:

    He is now a “community organizer.”

  7. ClubTwitty says:

    EIS Solutions-backed (?) ‘Environmentally Conscious Consumers for Oil Shale’

    The name sure does sound reasonable…any wagers on where the money comes from?…  

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