June 17, 2019 •

Monday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Campaign Finance National: “Why the Trump Campaign Won’t Pay Police Bills” by Dave Levinthal for Center for Public Integrity National: “Legal Fight Tougher for Congressman as Wife Pleads Guilty” by Julie Watson for AP News New York: “Council Passes Campaign […]

Campaign Finance

National: “Why the Trump Campaign Won’t Pay Police Bills” by Dave Levinthal for Center for Public Integrity

National: “Legal Fight Tougher for Congressman as Wife Pleads Guilty” by Julie Watson for AP News

New York: “Council Passes Campaign Finance Bill Roiling Early Mayoral Race” by Noah Berman for Gotham Gazette

Oregon: “Judge Strikes Down Portland Campaign Finance Limits” by Gordon Friedman for Portland Oregonian

Ethics

National: “Federal Watchdog Agency Recommends Removal of Kellyanne Conway from Federal Office for Violating the Hatch Act” by Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Lisa Rein, and Josh Dawsey for Washington Post

New Jersey: “Phil Murphy’s Office Was Warned About Improper Hiring at SDA, Ethics Official Says” by Dustin Racioppi for Bergen Record

Lobbying

Canada: “Democracy Watchdog Calls for Investigation into Lobbyists Selling Tickets for Ford Fundraiser” by Jill Mahoney for The Globe and Mail

Massachusetts: “Does Sal DiMasi Have to Register as a Lobbyist? The State Says He Already Lobbied – Illegally” by Matt Stout for Boston Globe

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June 14, 2019 •

Alaska Legislature Adjourns First Special Session, Governor Calls Second

Alaska State Capitol Buildling - Jay Galvin [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]

Lawmakers ended their special session on June 13. The Legislature passed a capital budget bill but failed to reach the three-quarter threshold required to fund major provisions. Failure to reach the threshold left millions of dollars in projects unfunded and […]

Lawmakers ended their special session on June 13.

The Legislature passed a capital budget bill but failed to reach the three-quarter threshold required to fund major provisions.

Failure to reach the threshold left millions of dollars in projects unfunded and federal match money at risk.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy called a second special session in order to address the permanent fund dividends the Legislature also could not agree on.

The second special session will convene on July 8, at 1 p.m. in Wasilla.

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June 14, 2019 •

Massachusetts Offering Seminars on New Disclosure Reporting System

Massachusetts Capitol Building

The Lobbyist Division of the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Office announced they are transitioning to a new disclosure reporting system on June 19. Exclusive, hour-long introduction and training seminars on the new system will be held from June 19 […]

The Lobbyist Division of the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Office announced they are transitioning to a new disclosure reporting system on June 19.

Exclusive, hour-long introduction and training seminars on the new system will be held from June 19 to June 21.

Appointment requests can be sent to lob@sec.state.ma.us.

Firms should offer three preferable times between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on any of the three available days.  Walk-ins for the seminar will not be accepted.

The Lobbyist Division will be offering additional training for all registered entities, lobbyists, and clients from June 24 to July 12.

Organizations that are unable to attend the introduction seminars can apply for these training sessions instead.

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June 14, 2019 •

Judge Strikes Down Portland Campaign Finance Limits

Multnomah County Circuit Judge Eric Bloch struck down voter-approved limits on campaign donations to candidates running for county offices. Judge Bloch’s ruling stated the $500 limit on donations violates Oregon’s expansive free expression guarantees in the Oregon Constitution. The decision […]

Multnomah County Circuit Judge Eric Bloch struck down voter-approved limits on campaign donations to candidates running for county offices.

Judge Bloch’s ruling stated the $500 limit on donations violates Oregon’s expansive free expression guarantees in the Oregon Constitution.

The decision mirrors one the judge issued in March 2018 striking down limits for Multnomah County races, citing a 1997 Oregon Supreme Court decision.

Judge Bloch also struck down another provision in the law requiring campaign advertising to list the top five donors, calling the provision vague and overbroad.

Supporters of the law say they will appeal the decision.

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June 13, 2019 •

Nevada Imposes New Disclosure Requirements

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak

Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a lobbying bill to codify existing interpretations of the Legislative Counsel Bureau and to impose additional disclosure from lobbyists. Assembly Bill 452 provides for more detailed information on registrations. Additionally,  the bill requires a supplemental registration […]

Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a lobbying bill to codify existing interpretations of the Legislative Counsel Bureau and to impose additional disclosure from lobbyists.

Assembly Bill 452 provides for more detailed information on registrations.

Additionally,  the bill requires a supplemental registration to be filed for any changes to registration within 24 hours during a legislative session and within 14 days during the interim.

The bill also clarifies that filing a notice of termination does not relieve the lobbyist of the duty to comply with certain continuing requirements and prohibitions of the Lobbying Act.

The bill is effective immediately.

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June 13, 2019 •

Thursday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Campaign Finance Indiana: “Judge Rules Against Fort Wayne’s Pay to Play Ordinance” by Dave Gong for Fort Wayne Journal Gazette New York: “Amid Controversy, City Council Moves Ahead with Campaign Finance Bill Extending Public Match” by Caitlyn Rosen for Gotham […]

Campaign Finance

Indiana: “Judge Rules Against Fort Wayne’s Pay to Play Ordinance” by Dave Gong for Fort Wayne Journal Gazette

New York: “Amid Controversy, City Council Moves Ahead with Campaign Finance Bill Extending Public Match” by Caitlyn Rosen for Gotham Gazette

Elections

National: “As 2020 Candidates Struggle to Be Heard, Their Grumbling Gets Louder” by Lisa Lerer and Reid Epstein for New York Times

Ethics

National: “Rep. Greg Pence Amends Filing That Showed Lodging Charge at Trump Hotel” by Maureen Groppe for USA Today

National: “DeVos’ Student Aid Chief Quits Foundation Board Following Questions on Conflict of Interest” by Michael Stratford for Politico

Washington: “Washington Supreme Court Weighing Legislative Records Case” by Rachel LaCorte for AP News

Legislative Issues

National: “What the Governors Feuding with Their Own Parties Have in Common” by Alan Greenblatt for Governing

Wisconsin: “Hours Before a Trial Was Set to Start, Wisconsin Supreme Court Reinstates Most GOP Lame-Duck Laws” by Patrick Marley for Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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June 12, 2019 •

Alabama Announces Special Election for House District 42

A special election will take place on August 20 followed by a runoff election on November 5. The elections will fill a vacancy in House District 42. Former Rep. Jimmy Martin held the seat until his passing in May.

A special election will take place on August 20 followed by a runoff election on November 5.

The elections will fill a vacancy in House District 42.

Former Rep. Jimmy Martin held the seat until his passing in May.

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June 12, 2019 •

Judge Blocks Fort Wayne Pay-to-Play Rule Enforcement

Fort Wayne, Indiana City Hall

Allen Superior Court Judge Jennifer DeGroote blocked the city of Fort Wayne from enforcing a pay-to-play ordinance. The ordinance restricts how much money the owners of companies could give elected officials and still bid on city contracts. Under the ordinance […]

Allen Superior Court Judge Jennifer DeGroote blocked the city of Fort Wayne from enforcing a pay-to-play ordinance.

The ordinance restricts how much money the owners of companies could give elected officials and still bid on city contracts.

Under the ordinance companies are forbidden from bidding on a city contract if any owner, partner, or principal who owns more than 10% of the company gave more than $2,000 to the political campaign of a person with the responsibility of awarding contracts.

Judge DeGroote’s ruling stated the ordinance was superseded by state law, specifically the Home Rule Act.

The Home Rule Act grants municipalities the ability to self-govern in areas not covered by the state.

Under state law, elections are the domain of the Indiana Election Commission.

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June 12, 2019 •

Wednesday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Campaign Finance Indiana: “Are Watchdogs Over Indiana Campaign Donations Really Watching?” by Thomas Langhorne for Evansville Courier and Press New Jersey: “Gov. Phil Murphy, Lawmakers Reach Deal on Dark Money Disclosure” by Dave Levinsky for Burlington County Times Ethics National: […]

Campaign Finance

Indiana: “Are Watchdogs Over Indiana Campaign Donations Really Watching?” by Thomas Langhorne for Evansville Courier and Press

New Jersey: “Gov. Phil Murphy, Lawmakers Reach Deal on Dark Money Disclosure” by Dave Levinsky for Burlington County Times

Ethics

National: “Trump Lawyer’s Message Was a Clue for Mueller, Who Set It Aside” by Michael Schmidt and Charle Savage (New York Times) for MSN

California: “FPPC Rejects GOP Complaint About Union Donations for California Lieutenant Governor’s Furniture” by Sophia Bollag for Sacramento Bee

Texas: “Two Years After Bribery Scandal, Sreerama Welcomed Back as Harris County Vendor” by Zach Despart and Mike Morris for Houston Chronicle

Virginia: “‘A Rare Position’: Va. Gov. Ralph Northam could wind up with great power, months after almost resigning” by Gregory Schneider for Washington Post

Legislative Issues

National: “With Most States Under One Party’s Control, America Grows More Divided” by Timothy Williams for New York Times

Lobbying

National: “Bipartisan Senators Push New Bill to Improve Foreign Lobbying Disclosures” by Alex Gangitano for The Hill

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June 11, 2019 •

Bi-Partisan Bill to Amend FARA Introduced in U.S. Senate

On June 10, a bi-partisan bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate to amend the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 (FARA). The bill would provide the U.S. Attorney General greater authority to promote enforcement of the law and increase […]

On June 10, a bi-partisan bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate to amend the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 (FARA).

The bill would provide the U.S. Attorney General greater authority to promote enforcement of the law and increase disclosure requirements of agents of foreign principals.

Senate Bill 1762 requires foreign agents to disclose their clients immediately so policy makers can evaluate their positions in light of those associations.

Additionally, the bill requires the Justice Department to craft a comprehensive FARA enforcement strategy, and creates oversight mechanisms to prevent abuse of the new authorities according to the press release of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley, the Republican sponsor of the bill.

The legislation would also establish a review of the Lobbying Disclosure Act exemption to determine whether and to what extent it has been abused for purposes of concealing foreign influence.

Only 15 violations of FARA have been criminally prosecuted since 1966 and “about half of those stemmed from Mr. Mueller’s investigation,” according to Grassley’s statement in his press release.

Co-sponsors of the bill include Democratic Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Dianne Feinstein.

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June 11, 2019 •

South Carolina Announces Special Election to fill House Vacancy

A special primary election will take place on July 30 followed by a special election on October 1 to fill a vacancy in House District 84. The seat is vacant after former Rep. Ronnie Young passed away in May. A […]

A special primary election will take place on July 30 followed by a special election on October 1 to fill a vacancy in House District 84.

The seat is vacant after former Rep. Ronnie Young passed away in May.

A special primary runoff election is scheduled for August 31.

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June 11, 2019 •

Tuesday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Campaign Finance California: “Democrats Say They Don’t Take Big Tobacco Money. But JUUL Had a Sponsorship at Convention” by Andrew Sheeler for Sacramento Bee Minnesota: “Rep. Ilhan Omar to Reimburse $3,500 in Misspent Campaign Funds” by Emily Kopp for Roll […]

Campaign Finance

California: “Democrats Say They Don’t Take Big Tobacco Money. But JUUL Had a Sponsorship at Convention” by Andrew Sheeler for Sacramento Bee

Minnesota: “Rep. Ilhan Omar to Reimburse $3,500 in Misspent Campaign Funds” by Emily Kopp for Roll Call

Elections

National: “Election Rules Are an Obstacle to Cybersecurity of Presidential Campaigns” by Nicole Perlroth and Matthew Rosenberg for New York Times

Ethics

National: “NRA Money Flowed to Board Members Amid Allegedly Lavish Spending by Top Officials and Vendors” by Beth Reinhard, Katie Zezima, Tom Hamburger, and Carol Leonnig (Washington Post) for MSN

National: “Chao Created Special Path for McConnell’s Favored Projects” by Tucker Doherty and Tanya Snider for Politico

Florida: “State Ethics Commission Fines Gillum, Drops Most Charges” by Mary Ellen Klas and Elizabeth Koh for Miami Herald

Lobbying

New York: “Inside the Stealth Campaign for ‘Responsible Rent Reform’” by Vivian Wang for New York Times

Oklahoma: “Stitt to End $1.5 Million in State Agency Lobbying Contracts” by Tres Savage for NonDoc

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June 10, 2019 •

Monday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Elections National: “Echoes of Biden’s 1987 Plagiarism Scandal Continue to Reverberate” by Neena Satija (Washington Post) for Anchorage Daily News Ethics National: “A Wealthy Iraqi Sheikh Who Urges a Hard-Line U.S. Approach to Iran Spent 26 Nights at Trump’s D.C. […]

Elections

National: “Echoes of Biden’s 1987 Plagiarism Scandal Continue to Reverberate” by Neena Satija (Washington Post) for Anchorage Daily News

Ethics

National: “A Wealthy Iraqi Sheikh Who Urges a Hard-Line U.S. Approach to Iran Spent 26 Nights at Trump’s D.C. Hotel” by Joshua Partlow, David Fahrenthold, and Taylor Luck (Washington Post) for MSN

Florida: “Florida Repeals ‘Blind Trust’ Law That Shielded Rick Scott’s Investments” by Mary Ellen Klas (Miami Herald) for Tampa Bay Times

Illinois: “Mayor Lori Lightfoot to Introduce Ethics Package Aimed at Fighting City Hall Corruption” by John Byrne for Chicago Tribune

Michigan: “Guilty Detroit Metro Airport Boss Gasps at Verdict in $5M Bribery Case” by Robert Snell for Detroit Free Press

Tennessee: “Casada to Step Down as Speaker in August, Asks Governor to Call a Special Session” by Natalie Allison and Joel Ebert for The Tennessean

Lobbying

California: “Proposal Would Tighten San Diego Lobbyist Disclosures to Avoid Unintended Consequences” by David Garrick for San Diego Union Tribune

New Hampshire: “Top N.H. Lawmaker Says No Lobbying Involved in His Union Job, But His Predecessor Was a Lobbyist” by Casey McDermott for New Hampshire Public Radio

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June 7, 2019 •

Ontario Legislature Adjourns, Moves Return Date

Legislative Assembly of Ontario building - Saforrest (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)

The Legislative Assembly of Ontario adjourned its legislative session on June 6 and voted 64-35 to not return till October 28, a week following the federal election. Ontario is expected to be a major battleground in the upcoming election, with […]

The Legislative Assembly of Ontario adjourned its legislative session on June 6 and voted 64-35 to not return till October 28, a week following the federal election.

Ontario is expected to be a major battleground in the upcoming election, with the Conservative Party hoping to make major gains in the province.

Members of opposition parties suggest the extended break is an attempt to avoid hurting the Conservative Party’s chances to regain control.

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