March 29, 2013 •
Georgia Passes Ethics Bill with Lobbyist Gift Limits
Legislators have passed an ethics overhaul capping lobbyist gifts at $75 and eliminating a prior proposal to require lobbying registration for volunteer advocates. The House and Senate voted unanimously for House Bill 142 shortly before adjournment on Thursday, March 28, 2013.
This is the state’s first limitation on gifts to public officials. Exceptions to the $75 limit include committee dinners, dinners for caucuses, and certain lobbyist-funded travel. The $75 cap is per occurrence and per lobbyist.
There is no explicit limit on the number of gifts permitted. As part of the deal, volunteers will not have to register as lobbyists unless they are reimbursed $250 or more in expenses from an organization.
UPDATE: The bill will also remove the $300 lobbyist registration and renewal fee when it becomes effective on January 1, 2014, following approval by the Governor
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