October 12, 2020 •

Texas Governor Announces Senate District 30 Runoff Date

Texas Capitol Building

Texas Capitol Building

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott named December 19 as the special election runoff for Senate District 30 to fill Sen. Pat Fallon’s seat. The special election for Texas State Senate District 30 was held on September 29 after Fallon announced his […]

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott named December 19 as the special election runoff for Senate District 30 to fill Sen. Pat Fallon’s seat.

The special election for Texas State Senate District 30 was held on September 29 after Fallon announced his plans to run for election to the U.S. House to represent the 4th Congressional District of Texas.

State Rep. Drew Springer and Dallas Salon Owner Shelley Luther are on the ballot to fill Fallon’s seat. District 30 covers a big chunk of north Texas including parts of Grayson, Denton, Collin, and Parker Counties.

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October 9, 2020 •

Philadelphia Board of Ethics Announces Training Schedule

Philadelphia from South Street Bridge

Philadelphia from South Street Bridge - by King of Hearts

The Philadelphia Board of Ethics announced the 2020 lobbying training schedule. The virtual training will cover ethics rules, registering, and filing expense reports with the Board of Ethics. At this time, it is not mandatory to attend one of the […]

The Philadelphia Board of Ethics announced the 2020 lobbying training schedule.

The virtual training will cover ethics rules, registering, and filing expense reports with the Board of Ethics.

At this time, it is not mandatory to attend one of the 2020 lobbying trainings.

However, attendance at a training will be credited when the mandatory training provision takes effect for registered entities.

Registration for the lobbying training can be accomplished at https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEqd-6srj0tHdGweXo4WfNtm4z9H7yiRooO.

Questions regarding the schedule or training may be directed to the Board of Ethics at Lobbying@phila.gov or BOE.Training@phila.gov

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October 9, 2020 •

Hawaii Senate Confirms Judicial Appointments, Adjourns Special Session

The Hawaii State Senate confirmed eight judicial appointments on October 6 in its first special session of 2020. First Circuit Court Judge Karen Nakasone was appointed to the Intermediate Court of Appeals. Karin Holma, Tracy Fukui, Bryant Zane, and Andrew […]

The Hawaii State Senate confirmed eight judicial appointments on October 6 in its first special session of 2020.

First Circuit Court Judge Karen Nakasone was appointed to the Intermediate Court of Appeals. Karin Holma, Tracy Fukui, Bryant Zane, and Andrew Park were appointed to the District Court of the First Circuit. Additionally, Courtney Naso, Elizabeth Paek-Harris, and Thomas Haia were appointed to the District Family Court of the First Circuit.

Sen. Karl Rhoads, the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said the pandemic had caused a backlog in the courts and the appointees are eager to begin working.

The session then adjourned sine die October 6 after the Senate confirmed the appointments.

A lobbyist and employer activity report will be due within 30 days of adjournment sine die of the special session on November 5 for expenditures and contributions relating to legislative action considered during the special session.

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October 8, 2020 •

Mayor de Blasio Announces Special Election for City Council

New York City Hall

New York City Hall by Beyond My Ken

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a special election to be held on December 22 for City Council District 12. The seat is vacant after the expulsion of Bronx Councilman Andy King for accusations of sexual harassment, misuse […]

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a special election to be held on December 22 for City Council District 12.

The seat is vacant after the expulsion of Bronx Councilman Andy King for accusations of sexual harassment, misuse of city resources, and other ethics violations.

The winner of the special election will serve the remainder of King’s term through 2021.

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October 6, 2020 •

Extended Legislative Session in Mississippi Comes to an End

Mississippi Capitol

Mississippi State Capitol - by Ken Lund

The Mississippi Legislature met for the final time in the extended 2020 session on October 2 after passing several measures related to COVID-19 and the distribution of CARES Act funding. The session will officially end when the Legislature adjourns sine […]

The Mississippi Legislature met for the final time in the extended 2020 session on October 2 after passing several measures related to COVID-19 and the distribution of CARES Act funding.

The session will officially end when the Legislature adjourns sine die on October 10.

This does affect lobbyist dates reporting.

An end-of-session report is due on October 20, 10 days following adjournment sine die of the Legislature.

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October 5, 2020 •

Connecticut Legislature Adjourns Special Session

Connecticut State Capitol

On October 1, the Connecticut General Assembly adjourned their second special session of the year. During the special legislative session lawmakers passed House Bill 7005 concerning the processing of absentee ballots. The Legislature also passed bills reforming the state’s hemp […]

On October 1, the Connecticut General Assembly adjourned their second special session of the year.

During the special legislative session lawmakers passed House Bill 7005 concerning the processing of absentee ballots.

The Legislature also passed bills reforming the state’s hemp program, regulating the public utilities, and enhancements to state environmental law.

The bills were immediately released to the governor for his signature.

This does not affect lobbyist reporting.

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October 1, 2020 •

New York JCOPE Issues Advisory Opinion on Third Party Gifts

Albany Skyline

Albany Skyline - by Antony-22

On October 1, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) announced the final draft of Advisory Opinion 20-02, providing guidance to identify the permissibility of a gift to a third party at the direction of or on behalf of a […]

On October 1, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) announced the final draft of Advisory Opinion 20-02, providing guidance to identify the permissibility of a gift to a third party at the direction of or on behalf of a public official.

Statutes and regulations presumptively prohibit a gift to a public official from an interested source or gifts to a third party solicited by a public official or an intermediary.

Advisory Opinion 20-02 allows the presumption of impermissibility to be overcome by taking into account specific situations including: the nature or purpose of the gift; nature of the donor’s pending business with the official; and prior history of gifts to the cause or third-party organization.

JCOPE will determine whether a gift violates the law or overcomes the presumption on a case-by-case basis.

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October 1, 2020 •

Vermont Legislature Adjourns Sine Die

Vermont Capitol Building

The Vermont General Assembly adjourned sine die on September 25. The Legislature normally adjourns in May but was extended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lawmakers adjusted to the pandemic by holding remote online meetings. During the remote legislative session, lawmakers […]

The Vermont General Assembly adjourned sine die on September 25.

The Legislature normally adjourns in May but was extended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lawmakers adjusted to the pandemic by holding remote online meetings.

During the remote legislative session, lawmakers were able to pass bills relating to the 2021 fiscal year budget, police reform, and a land use reform.

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September 28, 2020 •

Connecticut Governor Announces Special Session

Connecticut State Capitol

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont announced a special session to convene on Tuesday, September 29. The General Assembly will consider legislation for several policy issues including: performance-based regulation of the state’s electricity, gas, and water companies; securing absentee ballots for the […]

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont announced a special session to convene on Tuesday, September 29.

The General Assembly will consider legislation for several policy issues including: performance-based regulation of the state’s electricity, gas, and water companies; securing absentee ballots for the general election; school construction projects; and opportunities for the state’s hemp program.

The Legislature will also consider four nominations announced by the governor in July to fill a vacancy in the state Supreme Court and three seats in the Appellate Court.

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September 28, 2020 •

Governor Signs Bill Restoring Non-Presidential Year Primaries to June

elections

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill moving non-presidential year primaries back to June. Senate Bill 970 will return California to the traditional midterm primary date. The bill becomes effective January 1, 2021.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill moving non-presidential year primaries back to June.

Senate Bill 970 will return California to the traditional midterm primary date.

The bill becomes effective January 1, 2021.

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September 28, 2020 •

South Dakota Governor Calls Special Session of Legislature

South Dakota Capitol Building

South Dakota Capitol Building

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem announced she is calling a special legislative session on Monday, October 5, 2020. The main purpose of this session is to consider legislation related to the use of federal stimulus relief funds, including the $1.25 […]

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem announced she is calling a special legislative session on Monday, October 5, 2020.

The main purpose of this session is to consider legislation related to the use of federal stimulus relief funds, including the $1.25 billion allocated to South Dakota in Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF).

Unless an extension is granted, South Dakota has until December 30, 2020 to spend all CRF dollars.

The administration has spent about $114 million of the $1.25 billion in federal funds allocated to the state.

Noem has mapped out a plan to spend the bulk of the money, including up to $400 million in small business grants.

However, some House members said lawmakers should be included in the decision.

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September 22, 2020 •

Louisiana Lawmakers Announce Special Legislative Session to Address COVID-19, Unemployment

Louisiana State Capitol

Louisiana State Capitol

The Louisiana Legislature will convene in a special session on September 28 to address issues such as COVID-19, storm relief, and unemployment.

The Louisiana Legislature will convene in a special session on September 28 to address issues such as COVID-19, storm relief, and unemployment.

The Louisiana Constitution authorizes lawmakers to call themselves into special session upon the written petition of a majority of the elected members of each house.

Lawmakers may file and consider bills on 70 items. House Speaker Clay Schexnayder announced the special session will focus primarily on Hurricane Laura disaster relief and recovery efforts, on-going issues with COVID-19 relative to funding and the economy, and the state’s Unemployment Trust Fund.
Several House members have also asked to address the continued proclamations issued by Gov. John Bel Edwards during the pandemic and what many see as an imbalance of power.
The session is set to begin September 28 at 6 p.m. and must adjourn by 6 p.m. on October 27.

This does not affect lobbyist reporting.

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September 17, 2020 •

County Commissioners Approve Changes to Lobbying Regulations

Tallahassee City Hall

Leon County, Florida commissioners have approved an ordinance updating the county’s lobbying regulations. The new ordinance updates the registration and reporting process by removing the notary requirement and developing an online registration form. The ordinance also defines a clear process […]

Leon County, Florida commissioners have approved an ordinance updating the county’s lobbying regulations.

The new ordinance updates the registration and reporting process by removing the notary requirement and developing an online registration form.

The ordinance also defines a clear process for enforcement and adds new penalties for violations of the lobbyist regulations.

A public hearing will be held on the new ordinance on October 13.

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September 16, 2020 •

Fort Collins City Council Approves LLC Contribution Amendments for Final Passage

handshake

Two Fort Collins City Council campaign finance ordinances were approved for final passage on September 15. Ordinance 109-2020 will allow unexpended campaign contributions to a candidate committee to be contributed to a candidate committee established by the same candidate for […]

Two Fort Collins City Council campaign finance ordinances were approved for final passage on September 15.

Ordinance 109-2020 will allow unexpended campaign contributions to a candidate committee to be contributed to a candidate committee established by the same candidate for a subsequent campaign in a city election or to a candidate committee established after January 1, 2021.

The ordinance will also reduce the penalty for certain lower-level campaign finance violations from a criminal misdemeanor to a civil penalty.

Ordinance 112-2020 requires donations from LLCs to include statements that attribute the donation to specific LLC members.

The donations attributed through an LLC will then count toward individual donation limits.

Ordinance 112-2020 will also place a $100 cap on donations to political committees.

Both ordinances will become effective 10 days from the date of final passage on September 25.

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