April 1, 2020 •

Austin City Clerk’s Office Closes to the Public

Austin City Hall - by Carol M. Highsmith

Due to the social distancing restrictions being implemented by the City of Austin, the Office of the City Clerk has closed to members of the public. Correspondence and payments pertaining to lobbyist registrations/renewals may still be mailed in and will […]

Due to the social distancing restrictions being implemented by the City of Austin, the Office of the City Clerk has closed to members of the public.

Correspondence and payments pertaining to lobbyist registrations/renewals may still be mailed in and will be processed based on their postage date.

Operations are continuing via telework, and employees may be reached via email.

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March 31, 2020 •

Colorado General Assembly Meets Briefly on March 30

Colorado Capitol

Colorado Capitol Building

The Colorado House and Senate convened for one day on March 30. However, lawmakers took different approaches to returning from the General Assembly’s COVID-19 recess. The House recessed until Thursday, April 2. Lawmakers in the House based their decision on […]

The Colorado House and Senate convened for one day on March 30.

However, lawmakers took different approaches to returning from the General Assembly’s COVID-19 recess.

The House recessed until Thursday, April 2.

Lawmakers in the House based their decision on the constitutional provision allowing for a three-day recess without formal agreement from both chambers.

The Senate, however, postponed indefinitely based on another interpretation.

The Senate interpretation allows the General Assembly to remain recessed without setting an exact date to reconvene.

On April 2, the House is expected to meet briefly and recess again for an unspecified period of time.

This does not affect lobbyist reporting.

Additionally, the General Assembly is still considered to be in regular session for purposes of restrictions on contributions from lobbyists during the session, as the General Assembly has not adjourned sine die.

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March 31, 2020 •

Hawaii Proposed Administrative Rule Hearing Rescheduled

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission has rescheduled its public hearing on proposed administrative rules concerning amendments to state lobbying and gift laws for May 7. Due to COVID-19 concerns, the original date of March 19 was postponed. The proposals include: […]

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission has rescheduled its public hearing on proposed administrative rules concerning amendments to state lobbying and gift laws for May 7.

Due to COVID-19 concerns, the original date of March 19 was postponed.

The proposals include:

  • Clarifications as to what activities constitute lobbying
  • Exclusions from lobbyist registration requirements
  • A requirement that expenditures be reported on an accrual rather than cash basis

Additionally, the proposals would amend prohibitions on certain kinds of gifts, valuation of gifts, and gift disclosure statements.

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March 31, 2020 •

Lawmakers in Newfoundland and Labrador Adjourn

Confederation Building, Newfoundland, CA - by shhewitt

On March 26, the General Assembly of Newfoundland and Labrador agreed to adjourn parliamentary business until an unspecified future date. The adjournment is in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The legislature will remain adjourned until the call of the Chair, […]

On March 26, the General Assembly of Newfoundland and Labrador agreed to adjourn parliamentary business until an unspecified future date.

The adjournment is in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The legislature will remain adjourned until the call of the Chair, the procedure for recalling lawmakers into session. 

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March 31, 2020 •

New York Nassau County Attorney Announces Extension For Lobbyist Report

Flag of Nassau County, NY

The Office of the County Attorney announced emergency regulations extending the deadline for filing first quarter lobbyist reports. This comes in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and current state of emergency. The deadline for lobbyist reports covering activity for the […]

The Office of the County Attorney announced emergency regulations extending the deadline for filing first quarter lobbyist reports.

This comes in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and current state of emergency.

The deadline for lobbyist reports covering activity for the period of January 1 to March 31 is extended until May 15.

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March 31, 2020 •

April Sitting of Prince Edward Island Legislature Postponed Due to Coronavirus

Prince Edward Island Legislative Assembly Chamber - Joseph Thornley

The anticipated start date of April 7, 2020, for the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island has been postponed until a date to be determined due to the coronavirus pandemic. Speaker Colin LaVie suspended the Spring Sitting of the Legislature […]

The anticipated start date of April 7, 2020, for the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island has been postponed until a date to be determined due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaker Colin LaVie suspended the Spring Sitting of the Legislature based on recommendations of the province’s chief public health officer.

LaVie intends to call the legislature into session after consultation with the other parliamentary leaders as the situation evolves.

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March 31, 2020 •

British Columbia Legislative Committees Videoconferencing

British Columbia Legislature

As of March 30, committees of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, such as the Public Account Committee, continue to meet using videoconferencing. Some of the committee videoconferencing is available for the public to view live on the Assembly’s website. […]

As of March 30, committees of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, such as the Public Account Committee, continue to meet using videoconferencing.

Some of the committee videoconferencing is available for the public to view live on the Assembly’s website.

On March 23, lawmakers had adjourned their Spring Session to a date they have not yet determined.

Legislators will reconvene at their physical legislative building when the Speaker of the House, after consultation with the government, determines the public interest requires it or when advised by the government.

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March 31, 2020 •

Yukon Legislature to Convene October 1

Yukon Legislature

On October 1, the Yukon Legislative Assembly is scheduled to convene, having recessed in response to the coronavirus pandemic. On March 19, the legislature adjourned its Spring Session earlier than the scheduled April 16 end-of-session date, while still staying late […]

On October 1, the Yukon Legislative Assembly is scheduled to convene, having recessed in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

On March 19, the legislature adjourned its Spring Session earlier than the scheduled April 16 end-of-session date, while still staying late on its last day to complete consideration of Bill No. 203, a fiscal appropriation act for the territory.

“These are unusual times that call for unusual measures,” said Speaker Hon. Nils Clarke said in his press release.

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March 31, 2020 •

New York JCOPE Suspends Lobbying Random Audit Program

New York Capitol

New York Capitol Building

The Joint Commission on Public Ethics announced the suspension of the Lobbying Random Audit Program to avoid unnecessary administrative burden during the COVID-19 emergency. Effective immediately, no new audits will be initiated by JCOPE until further notice. Complying with ongoing […]

The Joint Commission on Public Ethics announced the suspension of the Lobbying Random Audit Program to avoid unnecessary administrative burden during the COVID-19 emergency.

Effective immediately, no new audits will be initiated by JCOPE until further notice.

Complying with ongoing audits is voluntary until the commission resumes the audit program.

Any questions regarding this policy should be emailed to helpdesk@jcope.ny.gov, with ‘Audit’ in the subject line.

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March 30, 2020 •

New York JCOPE Announces Extension And Temporary Procedures

New York State Capitol

NY State Capitol - by formulanone

Due to the COVID-19 emergency, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics announced a deadline extension for all lobbying filings until April 15. The extension includes bimonthly reports covering activity for the reporting period of January to February 2020. JCOPE also […]

Due to the COVID-19 emergency, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics announced a deadline extension for all lobbying filings until April 15.

The extension includes bimonthly reports covering activity for the reporting period of January to February 2020.

JCOPE also announced temporary procedures regarding hand delivery of report filings and checks.

Until further notice, visitors are not allowed into the JCOPE offices. Beginning April 15, JCOPE will accept hand delivery of lobbying filings.

However, the commission is not accepting hand delivery of checks until further notice.

Instead, any checks should be submitted either by mail or by submitting the filing through the online Lobbying Application using a credit card to pay the submission fee.

If neither option is possible, JCOPE asks filers to hold all checks for hand delivery until further notice.

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March 30, 2020 •

New Hampshire Legislature Suspends Legislative Session

New Hampshire State House - AlexiusHoratius

State Senate President Donna Soucy and Speaker of the House Stephen Shurtleff announced the General Court has extended the suspension of all legislative activities through May 4. During this time, the State House is closed to legislative members, legislative staff, […]

State Senate President Donna Soucy and Speaker of the House Stephen Shurtleff announced the General Court has extended the suspension of all legislative activities through May 4.

During this time, the State House is closed to legislative members, legislative staff, and visitors.

The announcement is in conjunction with Governor Chris Sununu’s emergency stay-at-home order due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns.

This does not affect lobbyist reporting.

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March 30, 2020 •

Michigan Encourages Absentee Voting in May 5 Elections

Michigan Capitol Building

Michigan State Capitol - By Brian Charles Watson

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-27 on March 29 suspending rules under Michigan election law for elections on May 5. Additionally, the Governor instructed local clerks, county clerks, and election administrators to immediately begin preparations to conduct the election […]

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-27 on March 29 suspending rules under Michigan election law for elections on May 5.

Additionally, the Governor instructed local clerks, county clerks, and election administrators to immediately begin preparations to conduct the election primarily by mail.

The Department of State may assist with the mailing of absent voter ballot applications and preparation of postage-prepaid absent voter ballot return envelopes for the return of voted ballots.

Gov. Whitmer is encouraging all voters to vote by absentee ballot.

However, each jurisdiction must maintain at least one location on election day where any voter can appear in-person to receive and submit a ballot.

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March 30, 2020 •

Indiana Election Commission Suspends Normal Requirements for Absentee Ballots

Indiana State Capitol - By Daniel Schwen / CC BY-SA

The Election Commission has suspended the normal requirements for absentee balloting in the June 2 presidential and state primary elections. Gov. Eric Holcomb postponed the presidential and state primary elections to June 2 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Indiana Election […]

The Election Commission has suspended the normal requirements for absentee balloting in the June 2 presidential and state primary elections.

Gov. Eric Holcomb postponed the presidential and state primary elections to June 2 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Indiana Election Commission Order 2020-37 authorizes the temporary suspension of the state’s statutory absentee voting eligibility requirements.

This will allow all voters to cast their ballots by mail.

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March 30, 2020 •

South Dakota Considering Postponing Elections

South Dakota Capitol Building

South Dakota Capitol Building

Due to growing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, state lawmakers will consider a bill to postpone upcoming municipal elections at least until June. Additionally, lawmakers will consider allowing Gov. Kristi Noem to delay the presidential primary from June 2 to […]

Due to growing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, state lawmakers will consider a bill to postpone upcoming municipal elections at least until June.

Additionally, lawmakers will consider allowing Gov. Kristi Noem to delay the presidential primary from June 2 to July 28.

The elections bill is one of at least nine last-minute bills related to COVID-19 to be considered on the last working day of the 2020 legislative session.

Lawmakers are expected to discuss and vote on bills remotely without gathering in Pierre.

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