E-News from State and Federal
A Top Women-Owned
Business in Ohio
Great news from
and Federal Communications has been named one of the
top women-owned businesses in Ohio. This is the fourth time
we have received the award and this year, we ranked 49th
in the state. We were selected for our overall leadership and
This is a testament to the hard work of our 30 employees and
their willingness to adapt to change and meet
the challenges of
a competitive marketplace. I am very happy we are recognized
once again by
honors those independently owned companies founded or currently
led by women, minorities, or people with disabilities. “We have
a great future ahead of us, especially as entrepreneurs continue
to reinvent products and services that transform the way we
live,” says Kenton Clarke, CEO of Computer Consulting Associates
International, the company which founded
“Our nation’s business leaders are relentless. It isn’t a mere
coincidence to see our competitive spirit still alive and endure
under any circumstance.”
know there have been economic challenges, but we continue to
persevere. Our business continues to thrive and we have hired
two people since the first of the year and promoted two others.
We are always meeting people who, through no fault of their own,
have lost jobs because of the current economic downturn. While
we are based in northeast Ohio, our business is national and
international, and we continue to seize new opportunities to
serve our clients.
We are truly an All American Company in one of the All American
Enjoy your summer.
Elizabeth Z. Bartz
President and CEO
Amends Executive Lobbying Law to Include Placement Agents
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear signed House Bill 300
into law on April 11, 2012. The bill amended the definition of
executive agency lobbyist to include placement agents and
unregulated placement agents. A placement agent is an individual
or firm who is compensated or hired by an employer or other real party
in interest for the purpose of influencing an executive agency decision
regarding the investment of Kentucky Retirement Systems (KRS) or
Kentucky Teachers' Retirement System assets. An unregulated placement
agent is a placement agent who is prohibited by federal securities
laws and regulations from receiving compensation for soliciting a
government agency. This law became effective upon signing.
The law is the result of a state audit of KRS, which
found that the relationships between placement agents and KRS lacked
transparency. One particular placement agent, Glen Sergeon, earned
nearly $6 million in fees as a result of a then-undisclosed relationship
with KRS’ Chief Investment Officer Adam Tosh. Tosh resigned in 2010
after being questioned about Sergeon’s fees in an internal audit. The
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is conducting an inquiry after
a KRS trustee filed a whistleblower complaint regarding the use of
placement agents. The SEC is taking an increased interest in the role
of placement agents after their use led to pay-to-play scandals in other
Placement agents are now required to register as
lobbyists with the Kentucky Executive Branch Ethics Commission if they
make direct contact twice in a calendar year for the purpose of
influencing an executive agency decision involving state funds of at
least $5,000. Placement agents required to register as lobbyists are
subject to the same disclosure and reporting requirements as other
executive agency lobbyists. Executive agency lobbyists must disclose
any expenditures made to or on behalf of executive agency officials but
are not required to report their compensation, meaning that any fees a
placement agent receives as a result of doing business with KRS would
remain undisclosed under the new law.
Summary of Changes UPDATE
Note Recent Changes to
by John Cozine, Esq.
BERGEN COUNTY, NEW JERSEY: The
Bergen County Board of Chosen Freeholders issued a memorandum clarifying
its pay-to-play ordinance adopted last year. In the section of the
ordinance concerning the prohibition on awarding contracts to certain
contributors, the phrase “any candidate for elective office in the
County of Bergen or holder of elective office in the County of Bergen”
is used. The board’s memorandum states the phrase is limited to persons
“who run for, or are elected to" county offices. The phrase does not
include candidates for a municipal office held in the county, statewide
candidates for the assembly or senate, or federal candidates whose
districts include Bergen County.
VIRGINIA: A new electronic lobbyist
registration system is now available. All lobbyists, including those
already registered for 2012-2013, will need to create new account at
https://solutions.virginia.gov/Lobbyist and complete a new
lobbyist registration. New accounts must be activated through the
confirmation e-mail sent from the state. Lobbyists will also receive a
confirmation e-mail when their electronic registrations have been approved
by the state.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK: The New York
City Campaign Finance Board is adding a reporting requirement for
independent spenders engaging in political advertising. The reporting
requirement will be triggered once an independent spender makes covered
expenditures aggregating $1,000 during an election cycle for
communications referring to a candidate or ballot proposal. Once the
requirement is triggered, all expenditures of $100 or more referring to
a candidate or ballot proposal must be included in a disclosure
statement. This rule will not affect any elections occurring prior to
August 13, 2012.
WASHINGTON: Effective June 7, 2012,
all political advertisements supporting or opposing ballot measures
costing $1,000 or more and sponsored by a PAC must include the names and
addresses of the PAC’s top five contributors. Another bill with the same
effective date expands coverage of the campaign finance laws to include
school board members.
WAYNE COUNTY, MICHIGAN: The Wayne
County Ethics Ordinance will take effect on June 4, 2012. On that date,
lobbyists will be required to register with the Wayne County Board of
Ethics. Lobbyists will also be restricted to giving public servants no
more than $100 in food and beverages annually. No other gifts will be
Legislation We Are
At any given time, more than 1,000
legislative bills, which can affect how you do business as a government
affairs professional, are being discussed in federal, state, and local
jurisdictions. These bills are summarized in the State and Federal
Communications’ digital encyclopedias for lobbying laws, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying, and can be found in the client
portion of the State and Federal Communications' website.
Summaries of major bills are also included
in monthly e-mail updates sent to all clients. The chart below shows the
number of bills we are tracking in regards to lobbying laws, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying.
Number of Jurisdictions
E B S I T E
T I P
you looking for a copy of the statute that was cited on the website?
you need a form to file with the state?
Are you looking for the city’s
Every jurisdiction in every publication on our
website has a list of resources that is one mouse click away. On the
left side of your screen, at the bottom of the list of links, you will
see a link to “Statutes, Regulations, Forms…” Click on that link and you
will find a list of all of the laws cited in that jurisdiction’s entry,
relevant opinions issued by that jurisdiction or courts within that
jurisdiction, guides and other helpful information distributed by that
jurisdiction, and all of the forms you need to remain in compliance.
ASK THE EXPERTS
State and Federal
Communications’ Experts Answer Your Questions
Here is your chance to “Ask the Experts” at State and
Federal Communications, Inc. You can directly submit questions for this
feature, and we will select those most appropriate and answer them here.
Send your questions to:
(Of course, we have always been available to answer questions from
clients that are specific to your needs, and we encourage you to
continue to call or e-mail us with questions about your particular
company or organization. As always, we will confidentially and directly
provide answers or information you need.) Our replies to your questions
are not legal advice. Instead, these replies represent our analysis of
laws, rules, and regulations.
I am not currently registered as a lobbyist and
I would like to send a letter to all state legislators in
support of pending legislation. Do I need to register as a
The act of sending a letter in support of or in
opposition to legislation can be enough to trigger the lobbyist
registration requirement in a state. Whether or not registration
is required is dependent upon the lobbyist registration
threshold in any given state.
Some states have thresholds based on the
definition of lobbying whereby engaging in a lobbying activity
will require lobbyist registration. For example, in a state
where registration is required upon receipt of compensation to
encourage the passage, defeat, approval, or modification of
legislation by members of the legislature, lobbyist registration
would be required prior to sending the letter. Iowa is an
example of this type of state. Other states have thresholds
based on the amount of time spent lobbying or preparing to
lobby. In Maine, an individual is permitted to spend eight hours
lobbying before registration is required. In such a state,
tracking your time while preparing the letter will be important
in determining if registration is required.
Please consult the lobbyist registration
threshold in your jurisdiction prior to sending any
correspondence to a public official.
Wealth of Information at
Want to interact
with your fellow government affairs and procurement colleagues? Then
jump into the State and Federal Communications, Inc. blog at
Once there, you
can join the exchange of ideas and view solutions to common challenges
and problems. Also, State and Federal Communications continually adds
content to the blog, including ‘hot topics,’ which are summaries of
important news items you need to know.
the conversation, and make use of this valuable information resource.
State and Federal
State and Federal
Communications, Inc.'s Nola Werren celebrated her 15th
anniversary with the company. She received a U.S. flag
[from the office of Congresswomen Betty Sutton] that had been flown over the
U.S. Capitol and a new laptop computer.
No doubt to our readers that
the best part of a company milestone is a cake from Leach's
Meats and Sweets [Barberton, Ohio]. We celebrated
with a white cake with white buttercream filling and chocolate
fudge frosting. Delicious!
Elections has evolved over the years from the first job
Elizabeth held in Washington, D.C. This conference was
filled with great information on technology and social media.
Attending from State and Federal Communications, Inc. were Joe
May, Elizabeth Z. Bartz, and Ren Koozer.
Staff from State and Federal Communications, Inc.
enjoyed the Reds vs Cubs game at the Great American Ball Park.
Attending were Elizabeth Z. Bartz, Michael Beckett, Myra Cottrill, Steve Quinn, Ren Koozer, and John Cozine.
See Us in Person
Plan to say hello at future
State and Federal Communications
will be attending and/or speaking regarding
Heartland (COGEL) Conference
St. Louis, Missouri
17 - 20, 2012
| July 12, 2012
Greater Akron Chamber Services
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Federal Communications, Inc. | Courtyard Square | 80 South
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330-761-9965-fax | 1-888-4-LAW-NOW|
The Mission of State
and Federal Communications is
to make sure that your
organization can say, "I Comply."
We are the leading
authority and exclusive information source
legislation and regulations surrounding campaign finance
and political contributions; state, federal, and
municipal lobbying; and procurement lobbying.
Contact us to learn how
conveniently our services will allow you to say "I
Comply" for your compliance activities.