RECENT LOBBYING, ETHICS & CAMPAIGN FINANCE UPDATES
We read the news, cut through the noise and provide you the notes.
Welcome to Compliance Notes from Nossaman’s Government Relations & Regulation Group – a periodic digest of the headlines, statutory and regulatory changes and court cases involving campaign finance, lobbying compliance, election law and government ethics issues at the federal, state and local level.
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Campaign Finance & Lobbying Compliance
The Federal Election Commission has filed a notice of appeal with the Supreme Court of the United States to challenge an appellate court’s ruling that a limitation on the amount a candidate may pay themselves back with campaign donations received after the election was unconstitutional. (Kenneth Doyle, Bloomberg Government) (Federal Election Commission, Notice of Appeal)
Maine: The Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices voted unanimously to pursue a subpoena for financial documents from a political consultant who worked with an LLC named Stop the Corridor. The Commission is investigating whether the LLC should have registered as a political committee and, consequently, disclosed its donors. (Scott Thistle, Portland Press-Herald)
Colorado: A group seeking the recall of a Loveland City Councilman is asking a state court to enjoin the city from enforcing its new rules limiting contributions to recall committees to $130. Before the new rule, recall committees were permitted to receive unlimited contributions. (Max Levy, Loveland Reporter Herald)
Government Ethics & Transparency
Maryland: Baltimore’s Board of Estimates adopted a new expense policy for elected officials, which requires officials to seek the board’s approval for travel expenses of $100 or more if they are paid by a third party. (Phil Davis, The Baltimore Sun)
Michigan: The state house of representatives adopted a bill that would require legislators to file financial disclosure reports and wait two years before becoming state lobbyists. The bill now moves to the state senate. (David Eggert, Fox 2 Detroit)
New Mexico: The state’s Senate Leadership announced that the Interim Legislative Ethics Committee would not investigate whether Senator Jacob Candelaria violated conflicts of interest rules by voting on a cannabis-related bill after having represented a cannabis company in a legal matter before the state’s Department of Health. (Andy Lyman, NM Political Report)
Pennsylvania: Republican Speaker of the state house of representatives, Bryan Cutler, introduced a series of bills that would establish new rules for lobbyists, including more transparency, prohibitions on campaign consultants also engaging in lobbying and mandatory annual ethics training for lobbyists. (Bill Shannon, WTAJ)
Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Department of Justice would challenge restrictive state voting laws on civil rights grounds to ensure voters would not be disenfranchised. (Susan Milligan, US News & World Report)