E-News from State and Federal Communications, Inc.
September 2019

Europe—At Your Fingertips

We have not started providing language classes at State and Federal Communications! In 2018, I mentioned in our anniversary issue of Compliance Now, we were crossing the Atlantic Ocean and offering our valued clients information on lobbying and gift laws in the countries of the European Union.

We continue to build on the information we obtain from the various countries because we have found the lingo different. Many use bribery instead of defining what officials can receive for gifts. And, the concept of political action committees is very complicated to them.

But worry not, Research Associate George Ticoras, Esq. is on top of it at State and Federal  Communications. George has been with us since September 1, 2010, and has been able to tackle these countries and provide a great update to the staff at our meetings.

As you are preparing your government relations plan for 2020, consider adding our European Lobbying Compliance Laws. We have an affordable way for you to add it to your current services. Just give us a call.

Until then…


Elizabeth Z. Bartz

President and CEO

Oregon Bolsters Campaign Finance Laws and Requires Lobbyist Training 

Mario Dalessandro. J.D.
Research Associate              

The Oregon Legislature passed amendments to campaign finance and lobbying laws including a joint resolution to change the state constitution and three bills signed by Gov. Kate Brown requiring additional campaign disclosures and annual training for lobbyists.

Campaign Finance Disclosures

Senate Joint Resolution 18 proposes an amendment to the Oregon Constitution authorizing the adoption of state and local laws to impose contribution limits. To become effective, the proposed amendment must be passed by voters on the November 3, 2020 ballot.

House Bill 2716 requires communications supporting or opposing a candidate to disclose donors. Communications made by PACs must disclose the name of the PAC and the top five donors of at least $10,000. A communication made by an individual or for-profit business entity must only state the name of the individual or for-profit business entity. A penalty of 150% of the total cost of the communication may be imposed if the disclosure requirements are not met. House Bill 2716 becomes effective December 3, 2020.

House Bill 2983 requires covered organizations making political communications to file a donor identification list identifying donors making donations of $10,000 or more during that election cycle. Disclosure is required when spending more than $100,000 on communications related to statewide races or races in cities or counties with at least 60,000 residents. The disclosure threshold is $25,000 for legislative races and contests in smaller jurisdictions. A penalty not to exceed the lesser of 10% per day or 150% of the total cost of the communications may be imposed for violations. House Bill 2983 became effective when signed by the governor.

Lobbyist Training

House Bill 3377 requires registered lobbyists to attend annual training beginning in 2021. The bill establishes the Legislative Equity Office and the position of legislative equity officer to conduct the lobbyist training. Lobbyists will be required to certify training attendance to the Oregon Ethics Commission. The commission will be required to submit a report to the legislative equity officer that lists the date each lobbyist registered and the dates and duration of training each lobbyist completed for the prior calendar year. House Bill 3377 becomes effective January 1, 2021.

[The details for this article are updated on our website in the Registration and Reports Required sections of the Political Contribution Compliance Laws and the Registration and Definitions sections of the Lobbying Compliance Laws for Oregon.]

Summary of Changes UPDATE
Note Recent Changes to Compliance Regulations 

Michael Beckett, Esq.,
Research Manager

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS: City Council unanimously approved Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s ethics ordinance expanding registration requirements for nonprofits. Ethics Ordinance 2019-5305 includes in the definition of lobbyist a person who seeks to influence legislative or administrative action on behalf of a not-for-profit entity if such person is paid or  undertakes those efforts as a matter of professional engagement, regardless of pay. Registration is not required for providing nonpartisan research, technical advice, or discussion regarding broad social, economic, and similar problems. The lobbying amendments are effective January 2020.

FEDERAL: Guidance limiting IRS disclosure requirements was set aside by a federal judge. In Bullock v. IRS, the U.S. District Court District found the IRS violated the Administrative Procedure Act by not providing notice and allowing a public comment period before the guidance was issued. It predicated this decision by finding the guidance was a legislative rule. On July 16, 2018, the U.S. Treasury Department and the IRS announced certain tax-exempt organizations would no longer be required to report the names and addresses of contributors on their annual reports. These organizations are still required to continue to collect and keep the donor information and to make it available to the IRS upon its request. This change did not affect the information required to be reported by charities primarily receiving tax-deductible contributions, such as 501(c)(3) organizations, certain nonexempt private foundations, or 527 political organizations.

MARYLAND: The Maryland Department of General Services launched the state’s new electronic procurement system, eMaryland Marketplace Advantage (eMMA). The eMMA system is Maryland’s new online platform used to connect the vendor community with contracting opportunities from state, county, and local government entities. Registered vendors will receive notices of bid opportunities, submit bid responses, and obtain bid results online. Accounts from the previous system will not be transferred to eMMA. Vendors will have to register with the new system. The state is currently training over 825 procurement professionals to help during the transition and provide training to users.

NEW YORK: The Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) launched new search function capabilities from its lobbying application. JCOPE website users can now choose “Lobbying Focus” to search for recorded lobbying on specific bills, resolutions, and regulations at both the state and municipal levels. The new “Parties Lobbied” tool allows users to see which specific agencies or lawmakers were lobbied and on what subject. The public search is available at https://jcope.ny.gov/lobby-data-demand. 

SAN DIEGO: The City Council passed an ordinance amending lobbying rules based on recommendations from the city Ethics Commission. Ordinance 2019-148 modifies the definition of activity expense to include any payment made by a lobbyist to a city official if during the previous 12 months the lobbyist engaged in lobbying the city official’s department, agency, or city board. The ordinance also changes the disclosure of employment-related activity expenses from specific dollar amounts to one of seven disclosure categories. If signed by the mayor, the ordinance takes effect in 2020 when the first quarter filing is due. 

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 State and Federal Communications' digital encyclopedias for lobbying laws, political contributions, and procurement lobbying and can be found in the client portion of our website.

Summaries of major bills are also included in monthly email updates sent to all clients. The chart below shows the number of bills we are tracking in regard to lobbying laws, political contributions, and procurement lobbying.

  Total bills Number of Jurisdictions Passed Died Carried over
to 2020
Lobbying Laws 311 52 52 83 72
Political Contributions 576 57 84 167 143
Procurement Lobbying 342 51 49 89 70


Pay-to-play regulation of vendor campaign contributions raises the stakes of corporate participation in political campaigns. State and Federal Communications covers pay-to-play regulations in the Procurement Lobbying Compliance Laws publication. Each entry contains detailed information about any pay-to-play regulations applicable to vendors in that jurisdiction. It will also be noted if state pay-to-play laws are applicable at the municipal level. In addition to the comprehensive information in each jurisdiction’s entry, there are two quick reference charts dedicated to cataloging these restrictions in the states and covered municipalities. The charts can be accessed by clicking on the right side of the red Procurement Lobbying Compliance Laws button and selecting "States with Pay-to-Play Laws” or “Municipalities with Pay-to-Play Laws” in the pop-up menu. Make sure you refer to this information before you approve a contribution because an otherwise acceptable contribution can be trouble if given by a person doing business with the candidate’s jurisdiction.


State and Federal Communications’ Experts
Answer Your Questions

Here is your chance to “Ask the Experts” at State and Federal Communications, Inc. Send your questions to experts@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 email us with questions about your particular company or organization. As always, we will confidentially and directly provide answers or information you need.) Our replies are not legal advice, just our analysis of laws, rules, and regulations.

I’m a registered lobbyist in New Mexico and I heard a law passed earlier this year establishing new lobbyist disclosure reporting requirements. What should I know about the new reporting requirements to make sure I am compliant when I file my next report?


You are correct. A new law passed and became effective July 1, 2019. The next lobbyist disclosure report, due October 9th, is the first report affected by the new reporting requirements...

Read the full article here



Renae Bomba, Compliance Associate

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State and Federal Communications, Inc.
Scrapbook - August 2019

NCSL 2019 Photo Album


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

September 3-6

Content Marketing World Conference and Expo, Cleveland, OH

September 5-6

PLI Conference - Corporate Political Activities 2019, Washington, DC

September 12

Chamber Inclusion Summit, Akron, OH

September 16

PWIA Atlanta Regional Workshop, Atlanta, GA

September 17

WASRG Luncheon, Washington, DC

September 19

Akron Roundtable [featuring Secretary Tom Ridge], Akron, OH

September 25-27

PAC State and Local Government Relations Conference, Alexandria, VA

September 25

PWIA New Orleans Regional Workshop, New Orleans, LA

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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.