As Virginia Beach prepares for Hurricane Irene, residents might be curious to know that the city has been paying a Washington lobby shop to advocate for hurricaine defense projects.
Alcalde & Fay has lobbied federal officials on issues related to hurricane defense since 2008, according to congressional records. The coastal city located in southeast Virginia paid the firm $560,000 from Jan. 1, 2008, to June 30, 2011, to lobby on matters including money to fund ongoing hurricane protection and beach protection projects.
Lobbyists Nancy Prowitt and Nicole Booher handle the Virginia Beach account for Alcalde & Fay.
Booher, an associate at the firm, referred inquiries on their lobbying efforts to Prowitt, managing partner at Alcalde & Fay. Prowitt didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Virginia Beach has received assistance from the federal government over the last 10 years in its efforts to fight beach erosion. In 2002, the Army Corps of Engineers helped Virginia Beach complete a sand replenishment project that the group said saved the city about $82 million in damages during Hurricane Isabel in 2003.
The city has three beaches, which run 35 miles along the Atlantic Ocean and Chesapeake Bay, according to the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau. In 2009, 2.8 million people visited the city and spent more than $857 million, according to the most recent community profile from the Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development.