Compliance Notes - Vol. 2, Issue 2
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.
Our attorneys, policy advisors and compliance consultants are available to discuss any questions or how specific issues may impact your business.
If there is a particular subject or jurisdiction you’d like to see covered, please let us know.
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Campaign Finance & Lobbying Compliance
- The Federal Election Commission (“FEC”) will hold its first public meeting on January 14, 2021 where they will hear an Advisory Opinion request and deal with several Audit matters. (FEC, Agenda)
- Georgia: The Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission settled allegations of excessive and prohibited contributions to the 2017 campaign of Atlanta’s Mayor. A $37,000 civil penalty was part of the settlement. (WSBTV)
- Oklahoma: Two state lobbyists agreed to settle allegations that they used a PAC to make “straw donor” contributions. The Oklahoma County District Attorney made the decision not to seek criminal prosecution due to the settlement with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission, which included penalties of $65,000 and $50,000. (Nolan Clay, The Oklahoman)
- Los Angeles: A real estate developer paid $1.2 million to resolve its involvement in a U.S. Department of Justice prosecution of a bribery scheme related to a former Los Angeles Councilman. (David Zahniser, Los Angeles Times)
Government Ethics & Transparency
- New York: An audit by the State Comptroller’s Office found that the members of the City of Rochester’s Board of Ethics did not receive adequate ethics training. (WHAM)
- New York City: A sitting state senator agreed to pay a $15,000 civil fine for accepting trips and other gifts, including jewelry and a floral arrangement, while he was a city council member. (David Brand, Queens Daily Eagle)
- Twitter permanently suspended the President’s account, @realDonaldTrump. (Twitter)
Nonprofits & PACs
- Several of the country’s leading financial institutions and corporations have announced that they are pausing or reviewing their PAC’s donations in light of the violence at the Capitol on January 6, 2021. (Emily Glazer, et al., The Wall Street Journal)
- The Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari in a case involving whether, in light of First Amendment protections, a nonprofit can be compelled to provide the name of its donors to a state law enforcement agency. (Dan McLaughlin, National Review)