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When Is A Lobbyist Not A Lobbyist?
Tuesday, Mar. 15, 2011
Attempts to simplify registration and reporting by lobbyists took a step in the right direction when the Georgia legislature reversed an interpretation by the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission.
The commission’s advisory opinion determined that “everyone who is being paid at the moment they meet with a legislator are to be considered lobbyists and subject to registration and report filing every two weeks.” The fine for not reporting: $10,000.
But the House and Senate agreed this view did not take into account the number of teachers, employees, and business owners who meet with state representatives. A revised bill clarifies the definition of a lobbyist, saying “only those people who spend more than 10 percent of their time talking to legislators.”
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