Lawmakers embark on bills to influence lobbyists


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – The Pennsylvania State House of Representatives on Monday began proposing a package of bills aimed at influencing lobbyists, including limiting lobbyist giveaways and banning lobbyists from trying to ‘influence an elected official for whom they also worked as a campaign strategist. .

The bills were passed by the House State Government Committee and require votes in the House and Senate to reach Governor Tom Wolf.

One of the main bills would prohibit state officials, including lawmakers, from letting a lobbyist pay for their transportation, accommodation, recreation, or entertainment, and would limit lobbyists’ gifts to $ 250 per year. .

Wolf in 2015 banned employees under his jurisdiction from accepting gifts of any amount, but lawmakers still allow themselves to accept gifts in unlimited quantities from anyone seeking to influence them.

Lawmakers and other candidates for state office can still accept campaign contributions of any amount from anyone, including lobbyists and people who win contracts with the state.

Another central bill targets lobbyists or lobbying firms who also act as campaign consultants.

Under it, the lobbyist would be prohibited from lobbying a government official or an employee of its staff after serving as a campaign consultant to the official.

The ban lasts for that elected term and also applies to a lobbyist who had a financial interest in a company that provided campaign services.


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