New Pennsylvania Report on Lobbyists and Lobbying Firms Disclosing Ownership Interests Due October 7

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

As required by Act 70 of 2021, Pennsylvania lobbyists and lobbying firms must file their initial equity reports by October 7, 2021. The reports disclose either the total value or percentage of equity held by a lobbyist or lobbying firm in a principal they lobbied on behalf of between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021. Even if a lobbyist or lobbying firm does not hold equity in a principal, they are still required to complete a filing disclosing they hold no equity. In the future, reports will be due annually on July 30, covering the preceding July 1 through June 30. Please note, principals are not required to file these equity reports, but still have periodic expenditure reporting obligations.

While the term “equity” is not defined under the new law, guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of State clarifies that equity means any interest or ownership, including, but not limited to: any interest in any shares (however designated, whether voting or nonvoting); membership interests (however designated, whether voting or nonvoting); partnership interests (whether general or limited); and, any other interest that confers the right to receive a share of the profits and losses of, or distributions of property of, any partnership or business. The Department of State informally suggested that it may be open to a de minimis threshold under which lobbyists or lobbying firms need not specify the exact value or percentage of equity held. However, the Department of State does not presently appear to have arrived at a uniform position or threshold.

Reports may be completed here.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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