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 E-News from State and Federal Communications, Inc.

July 2012


See You at a
Summer Conference

Arenít you jealous of the families taking vacations in the summer? I know we all try to fit them in but it's hard to do when you look at the summer schedule of conferences.

Between NCSL, CSG, NGA, and ALEC there is little time between July 11th and August 8th to jump in a pool. And, let me add the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese is holding its Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress July 1st through July 5th. Yes, only the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese would think it is okay to have a conference during American Independence Day in Phoenix, Arizona. But, that is where yours truly will be for the holiday.

This year I have written a lot about how professional development and networking are really connected. Attending these conferences is a phenomenal way to run into people you might not see regularly and the associations have events incorporating networking opportunities.

My favorite conference this year will be CSG MLC in Cleveland, Ohio! This conference is including events at Blossom Music Center (the VA Wolf Trap of Ohio), at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and even the Pro-Football Hall of Fame in Canton. You will see the best of the best Ohio has to offer and we are only a few blocks away from Dan Gilbertís Horseshoe Casino.

If CSG MLC isnít in your plans, check out O H I O Night at NCSL in Chicago. Thanks to our friends at Whirlpool, this event will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Wednesday August 8th, at the Reid Murdoch Building on 325 North LaSalleóPenthouse Level. We will be happy to send you sponsor information to join us.

Until next month, remember you bring value to your organization because of the people you know in the government affairs community. See you on the circuit!

Elizabeth Z. Bartz
President and CEO
 


Delaware Legislature Passes Lobbying Bill 185

by Shamus Williams, Esq.
Research
Associate

One of Delaware Governor Jack Markellís largest focus areas since entering office has been creating a responsible government.  His state took one step closer to that goal when the legislature passed Senate Bill 185.  The bill, which Governor Markell spearheaded, increases lobbyist reporting when making direct communications with state officials and employees.  If a lobbyist makes a direct communication to a member of the general assembly, the lieutenant governor, or the governor on any bill or resolution pending before the general assembly, then that lobbyist is required to report the direct communication.  A lobbyist will also have to report any direct communications concerning a proposed regulation with an employee or official of the state agency proposing the regulation.

The lobbyist report will be due no later than the fifth business day after the date on which the direct communication took place.  If the direct communication was about a bill, resolution, or regulation that has not yet been introduced, the report is due no later than the fifth business day after that bill, resolution, or regulation is introduced.

The lobbyist is only required to disclose there was a direct communication that took place and the identity of the bill, resolution, or regulation that the communication was concerning.  The bill, resolution, or regulation may be identified by name or by number.  The lobbyist does not have to disclose the identity of the person with whom he or she had the direct communication.  Further, the reporting requirement does not apply to a lobbyist when he or she is fulfilling duties as a member of a commission, committee, task force, or other public body.

All of the reports filed under this law must be filed electronically by the lobbyist with the Delaware State Public Integrity Commission.  The commission, in turn, will post the reports in an online database for the public to access.

Governor Markell has stated he will sign the bill. If he does, the law will go into effect on January 1, 2013.


Summary of Changes UPDATE
Note Recent Changes to Compliance Regulations

by John Cozine, Esq.
Research Manager
 

NEW YORK: Governor Cuomo signed a bill that pushed back the stateís primary by two days to September 13, 2012. The primary is traditionally scheduled for the second Tuesday after Labor Day, but this year that day is September 11th. The date was changed out of respect for those who attend annual September 11th memorials. The delayed primary also pushed back all pre- and post-primary report due dates by two days.

NEW JERSEY: The 18-month time limit prohibiting political contributions under the stateís pay-to-play law starts at the time when bids for a request for proposal are submitted, the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey ruled. The court concluded the receipt of bids constitutes the "commencement of negotiations" and rejected the appellantís contention that the disqualification period begins on the day a political contribution is made.

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE: The Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County has rolled out a new online procurement system, known as iProcurement. Vendors and suppliers, as well as all subcontractors, wishing to do business with the metro government will have to register with the new system. The new system can be accessed through the metro governmentís procurement division website.

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA: A new lobbyist registration ordinance is in effect. The expenditure report due date is now November 1st of each year and continues to cover the period from October 1st to September 30th. Electronic registration is now available in addition to paper registration. Registrations now must include the phone number of the lobbyist and principal, their signatures where both may be made electronically, and the county or municipalities to be lobbied. The ordinance specifically excludes from expenditure reporting the salaries of the lobbyist and principal, office overhead expenses, and personal expenses for lodging, meals, and travel. All registrations on file and in effect with the county prior to the ordinance's effective date remain in full force and effect.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS: The Chicago Board of Ethics has rolled out a new electronic lobbyist registration system. Lobbyists may now register online at: https://webapps.cityofchicago.org/elf/index.html. Electronic registration is voluntary, so lobbyists may still file paper registrations if they choose to do so. Lobbyists already registered can use the online system to add clients to their registration forms. Registered lobbyists should contact the board of ethics if they need their login information.


Legislation We Are Tracking

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 Communicationsí 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.
 

  Total bills Number of Jurisdictions Passed Died Carried over
to 2013
Lobbying Laws 239 43 12 115 0
Political Contributions 422 46 29 188 0
Procurement Lobbying 263 42 27 138 1

 


W  E  B  S  I  T  E     T  I  P

Do you want to know what bills will be affecting your government affairs work in the future?

State and Federal Communications tracks legislation affecting lobbying, political contributions, and procurement lobbying. To access a list of pending legislation, choose the state (or the federal government) you are interested in from the pull-down menu and then select "Monthly Legislative Update" in the menu on the left-hand side of the screen. You will find a list of bills along with descriptive titles. Bills listed in red have been signed into law. Clicking on the bill number will bring up a brief summary of the bill and the important parts of the billís history showing how it has moved through the legislative process. Clicking on the bill number at the top of this screen will bring up the text of the entire bill. Bill status updates are also included in the Summary of Changes sent out each month.


ASK THE EXPERTS

State and Federal Communicationsí Experts Answer Your Questions

Here is your chance to ďAsk the ExpertsĒ 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: marketing@stateandfed.com. (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.

Q. 

I developed support for an issue by asking the public to contact and influence their legislator.  Should I be concerned with lobbyist disclosure requirements?

A.

You are engaging in grassroots lobbying.  Grassroots lobbying is communication by a representative of an entity to the general public encouraging correspondence to an official's

office in support of, or opposition to, an official action.  You must determine how grassroots lobbying is treated in your jurisdiction.

Engaging in grassroots activities may not meet the definition of lobbying.  In Utah, you must communicate directly with an official to be engaged in lobbying and have any registration or reporting requirements.  Next, grassroots lobbying may only trigger disclosure of related expenses.  Your grassroots lobbying expenses are disclosed in California if your employer is already registered.  Finally, grassroots lobbying may require registration and reporting.  Arkansas law expressly includes grassroots communications in the definition of lobbying and requires disclosure of the related expenditures.

Do not assume that if you do not contact a state official directly, you are not engaging in lobbying.  Confirm what activities constitute lobbying before taking action.


July's Expert - James Warner, Esq.

Wealth of Information at www.lobbycomply.com

Want to interact with your fellow government affairs and procurement colleagues? Then jump into the State and Federal Communications, Inc. blog at www.lobbycomply.com.

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 Ďhot topics,í which are summaries of important news items you need to know.

Join the conversation, and make use of this valuable information resource.

 



State and Federal Scrapbook
Attending the BIO Convention in Boston, Elizabeth Z. Bartz
enjoyed seeing many of our special clients including Brian O'Connor from BIO.

BIO acknowledged many of the sponsors for the BIO Convention on the scoreboard by the Green Monster at Fenway Park during an evening tour.

Elizabeth Bartz with the chair this yearís Go Red for Women luncheon, Virginia Albanese, president and CEO of FedEx Custom Critical.

State and Federal Communications, Inc. employees attending
 the Go Red for Women luncheon included
Nola R. Werren, Esq., David McPeek, and Becky Campbell.

Jim Tressel, Vice President of Strategic Engagement for the University of Akron, spoke at the ERC [Employers Resource Council] and ESPN Luncheon in Akron, Ohio on the importance of supporting an internship program in your office.  In this photo along with Jim Tressel were from State and Federal Communications, Inc. Compliance Associate, Jim Warner, Esq., and interns David Jones, Zachary Koozer, Maria Varonis, Alexa Livadas, Joanna Kamvouris, and President and CEO Elizabeth Bartz [as the photographer and supporter of a strong internship program.]
Joseph W. Mazur, president and chief executive officer of the All-American Soap Box Derby, spoke in June at an Akron Press Club event held at the University of Akron.  Commenting on the 75th Anniversary of the organization, he was enthusiastic about its future.  State and Federal employees photographed with Joe Mazur were Research Associate-Jennifer Zona, Esq., Alexa Livadas, Executive Director, I.T.-Ren Koozer, David Jones-former Soap Box Derby racer, and Zachary Koozer.


See Us in Person

 

Plan to say hello at future events where State and Federal Communications will be attending and/or speaking regarding compliance issues.

                 Events

 July 1-5, 2012 Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress
Phoenix, Arizona
 July 13-15, 2012

NGA Annual Meeting
Williamsburg, Virginia

 July 15-18, 2012

The Council of State Governments [CSG] Midwestern Legislative Conference
Cleveland, Ohio

August 6-9, 2012

NCSL (National Conference of State Legislatures) Booth 923
Chicago, Illinois


 


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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
on 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.

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