Bartz, President and CEO
2021—In Like a Lion and Out Like a
You know the saying “March comes in
like a lion and out like a lamb,”
well, I believe that is how we are going
to see 2021—every bit of it. In like a
lion for the Coronavirus, for the
economy, for the mental health of our
country, and even for the elections. Out
like a lamb for the Coronavirus,
hopefully for our economy, hopefully for
the mental health of our country, and
hopefully for the elections.
This is the time—right after a
Presidential election—when we are busy
preparing the registration forms for the
states because we know they will all be
in session. Not all necessarily on
January 4th, but they will all be in
session at some point during the year.
So, the year starts out strong because
being prepared for state activity is
important to everyone in our community.
And, State and Federal Communications is
prepared, too. We started our new
Awareness Campaign with our tag
line—Guiding You Along the Road to
Compliance. It is a maze, it is a
winding road, it is everything but a
straight road. Our website is updated,
faster, and ready to help you understand
everything about lobbying, campaign
finance, and procurement lobbying in the
entire United States and in Canada, the
European Union, and Latin America.
We are your #1 resource for 2021.
And, thanks Public Affairs Council,
imitation is the greatest form of
Here is wishing everyone a Health New
Year and we do hope to see you soon.
Elizabeth Z. Bartz
President and CEO
Beckett, Esq., Associate
Director, Research Services
FEDERAL: The U.S. Senate
restored a full complement of commissioners to the Federal
Election Commission (FEC). By confirming three new
commissioners, the FEC, where only three of the agency’s six
seats were filled since July 4, will now be able to conduct
official business. The FEC requires at least four commissioners
to agree on any official action. The Senate confirmed one
Democrat, Shana Broussard, and two Republicans, Sean Cooksey and
Allen Dickerson. No more than three members of the FEC may be
registered with the same political party. The remaining FEC
commissioners are Chair James E. "Trey" Trainor III, a
Republican, Ellen L. Weintraub, a Democrat, and Steven T.
Walther, an Independent.
HAWAII: The Hawaii Ethics
Commission administrative rules on gifts and lobbying are now
live and optional lobbyist training sessions will take place on
the mornings of January 6, 2021 and January 12, 2021 at 10 a.m.
Title 21 of the Hawaii Administrative Rules provides greater
clarity on lobbyist registration and reporting requirements of
the Hawaii Revised Statutes and memorializes longstanding ethics
commission advice. Noteworthy rule provisions include the
requirement that expenditures are reported on an accrual basis,
and a lobbyist registration exemption for individuals who work
behind the scenes to draft testimony, research, and work under
the direction of a registered lobbyist without directly
communicating with legislative or executive branch officials.
Lobbyists interested in attending either of the training
sessions may register at
NASHVILLE-DAVIDSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE:
The Metro Board of Ethical Conduct adopted a new lobbyist
registration form. The form, which is now available online, must
be filed along with the written client authorization via email
to the Office of Metro Clerk until the new online registration
portal is launched. The office will begin accepting the new form
on December 15 for continuing lobbyist engagements for 2021,
which must be filed by December 31. New registrations accepted
after December 15 will be treated as a continuing registration
for 2021. The Metro Council has also increased the registration
fee to $100, which must be hand delivered to the Office of Metro
Clerk or sent via U.S. mail.
NEW MEXICO: Lobbyists and
lobbyist employers may begin registering and paying their
registration fees in the new Campaign Finance Information System
https://login.cfis.sos.state.nm.us/#/index. Both lobbyists
and lobbyist employers will be required to register and create
an employer/employee relationship to comply with the
requirements of the new system. To help with the new system, the
Office of Secretary of State held live, online webinar classes
with a thorough overview and demonstrations. Additionally, video
instructions are available at
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON: City
Council approved an ordinance requiring additional transparency
and disclosures by paid lobbyists and indirect lobbying
campaigns. The vote was 8-1. This new legislation adds the
concept of indirect lobbying to the city’s lobbying regulations,
which has been part of Washington state law since 1973. Indirect
lobbying requirements will now apply to lobbyists, those who
hire them, or organizations taking out ads to influence members
of the public and encourage members of the public to lobby their
elected officials on legislation. Individuals behind a group
will now be required to identify themselves, their contractors,
and donors for contributions of $25 or more. The group will also
be required to describe its purpose and record spending in
monthly reports. If approved by the mayor, the rules will become
effective in 180 days.
JCOPE Concludes Revision of
New York Comprehensive Lobbying Regulations
most of 2020, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE)
sought public input on revisions to the Comprehensive Lobbying
Regulations (19 N.Y.C.R.R. Part 943). The revised rules were
adopted on emergency basis on November 17, to be effective
January 1, 2021, and cover lobbying activity in the 2021-22
Biennial Lobbying Period. Key revisions include changes to the
definition of designated lobbyist, direct lobbying activities by
volunteers, grassroots lobbying, coalitions, and prohibitions
relating to the receipt of stock options as compensation.
Designated lobbyist is a person selected,
appointed, named or otherwise chosen to lobby on behalf of a
client, but not retained or employed as defined for lobbying
purposes. This includes a person who is lobbying on behalf of
themselves and board members, directors, and officers of a
attendance by an employee or a volunteer at a Lobby Day does not
require that individual to register as a lobbyist unless also
speaking to a public official or staff on behalf of their
who publishes a grassroots lobbying communication is engaged in
grassroots lobbying on their own behalf, but is not required to
list themselves as an individual lobbyist unless they engage in
member’s contribution to a coalition is now considered a
lobbying expense for purposes of determining whether the
coalition member exceeds the $5,000 registration threshold for a
beneficial client. A coalition meeting the standard for
a structured coalition by having a president, treasurer, or
someone acting in that capacity must register and report as a
stock payments subject to the prohibition on contingency
lobbying, there is now a distinction between retained lobbyists
and employee or designated lobbyists for purposes of whether a
stock payment to a lobbyist is presumed impermissible. Stock
payments to retained lobbyists are presumed impermissible unless
certain factors are met, while stock payments to employee or
designated lobbyists are presumed permissible unless certain
factors are met.
JCOPE continued to
accept comments on the revised regulations as recently as
December 28. Any final adjustment to the regulations will be
effective for the 2021-2022 biennial registration period.
[The details for this article are updated on our website in the
U.S. Lobbying and Procurement Lobbying Compliance Laws and the
Contributions section of the U.S. Political Contributions
Compliance Laws for New York.]
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 regarding lobbying laws, political
contributions, and procurement lobbying.
Our Lobbying Compliance Laws and Procurement
Lobbying Compliance Laws have extensive information
addressing the restrictions on giving gifts to
public officials and employees. This information has
rules specific to gifts given by lobbyists and those
given by non-lobbyists. Keep in mind lobbyist
employers may be treated the same as lobbyists, the
same as non-lobbyists, or could be subject to
additional rules aimed directly at entities
employing a lobbyist. To address all of these
possibilities, please review “Restrictions specific
to lobbyist employers.” In jurisdictions without
lobbying laws, gift restrictions will likely be the
same for all three categories unless restricted
source rules apply.
State and Federal Communications’ Experts
Here is your chance
to “Ask the Experts” at State and Federal Communications, Inc.
Send your questions to
firstname.lastname@example.org. (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 Missouri and
I heard there is a new lobbyist gift ban going into
effect. What should I know about the new law to make
sure I am compliant?
are correct. A constitutional amendment went into effect
December 3, 2020 creating a lobbyist gift ban and
reducing campaign contribution limits.
On November 3, 2020,
voters in Missouri passed Amendment 3, a constitutional
amendment to amend Article III of the Constitution to
prohibit all gifts from lobbyists or lobbyist principals
to members of the General Assembly, staff members, and
anyone employed by the General Assembly...
Read the full article here
Click here to read ALL Ask the Experts articles in full
Please fill out the small form to gain access to all
For more information, be sure to check out the “Gift
Law” section of the U.S. Lobbying Compliance Laws online
publication for Missouri. Please feel free to contact us
if you have any questions.
Renae Bomba, Esq.
Manager, Compliance Services
State and Federal
Communications still celebrated with their staff for
But, with a new style. Looking forward to
sitting together one day soon.
our own, Jim Sedor for 2020.
NOW is published for our customers and friends.
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The Mission of
State and Federal Communications is to make
sure that your organization can say,
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