A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Senate leader Stivers wants ethics legislation to apply to executive branch lobbyists too

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Kentucky’s top Senate leader introduced legislation to require lobby executive branch agencies to have the same reporting requirements as legislative lobbyists. 
During a speech on the Senate floor Tuesday, Sen. Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, talked about bribery convictions over the last two years, particularly involving Tim Longmeyer, the personnel secretary under former...

John Schaaf: Legislative Ethics law — related to lobbyists — being defended in federal court

The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission met in Frankfort this week to review several issues, including the Commission’s recent trip to federal court in Cincinnati to defend key provisions of the ethics law, which were challenged by State Senator John Schickel of Boone County. Schickel filed a federal lawsuit in 2015, arguing that his constitutional rights are violated by the ethics law prohibition...

Lobbying spending reaches record high $2.6 million in first half of Kentucky legislative session

Immediately following a year of record lobbying spending, Kentucky businesses and organizations spent an all-time high of $2.6 million on lobbying in the first portion of the 2018 General Assembly session. After spending $20.8 million in 2017, 684 employers and 596 lobbyists started 2018 by spending 20 percent more than they spent in the same period at the beginning of last year’s session. The top...

Ethics Reporter: Lobbyists combined to spend $4.6 million over just 20 days of 2017 short session

Although the General Assembly was in session for just 20 days, $4.6 million was spent on lobbying in the first two months of the 2017 short session. Once again, the top spending lobbying organization was the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, which spent $88,090, 19 percent more than the Chamber spent in the same period in last year’s long session. In the most recent reporting period, the Chamber reported...

Ethics Reporter: Lobbyists spent a record $2.1 million during first month of legislative session

Although the General Assembly met for only five days in January to begin the 2017 session, the $2.1 million in lobbying spending broke the spending record for the first month of an odd-year legislative session. This year’s total is a 14 percent increase from the $1.8 million spent in the first month of 2015, the previous odd-year session. January 2017 spending almost reached the total spent in...

Ethics Reporter: Lobbyist spending for General Assembly reached all-time high of $20.8 million

Lobbying spending in Kentucky hit an all-time high in 2016, as $20.8 million was paid by businesses, organizations, and lobbyists pursuing their interests with the General Assembly. In the largest spending category, $18.7 million was spent last year by employers compensating lobbyists, a 10 percent increase over the $16.8 million in compensation paid in 2014, the previous even-numbered year with a...

Ethics Reporter: Total of 688 businesses and organizations registered to lobby 2017 Legislature

There are 688 businesses and organizations registered to lobby the 2017 General Assembly, according to the Legislative Ethics Commission. Those which have recently registered include: Balanced Budget Amendment Inc.; Black Hawk Mining, LLC; BPM Lumber; CIOX Health, LLC; Consumer Technology Association; Dell Technologies, Inc.; Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund; Greenwich Biosciences, Inc.; Kidz...

Ethics Reporter: Spending by lobbyists for businesses, organizations on record-breaking pace

Lobbyists and the businesses and organizations that employ them spent $15 million in the first eight months of 2016, and lobbying spending is on track to eclipse previous Kentucky spending records. The record for lobbying spending was set last year, when $19.3 million was spent. If spending continues at its current pace, at least $5 million will be spent in the last four months of the year, sending...

Ethics Reporter: 13 businesses that employ lobbyists contributed at least $50,000 to legislative conference

Earlier this month, nearly 1,500 state legislators, legislative staff, governmental officials, and family members from 15 states attended the four days of the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC) Annual Meeting in Lexington. SLC is the southern office of the Council of State Governments, which has its national headquarters in Lexington. Legislative organizations such as SLC, the National Conference...

Ethics Reporter: Spending on legislative lobbying reaches all-time high of $9.53 million

The final numbers for the 2016 General Assembly are in, and lobbying spending hit an all-time high of $9.53 million, a nine percent increase over 2014, the most recent year in which there was a session that lasted 60 legislative days. During the session, 698 businesses and organizations were registered to lobby, and that is also a record number, and a five percent increase over 2014. The surge in spending...

Ethics Reporter: Spending on lobbying during legislative session is on record pace

Businesses, organizations, and legislative agents spent $7.5 million lobbying in the first three months of the 2016 General Assembly, and if April spending continues at that pace, total spending for the session will easily eclipse the previous spending record of $8.8 million, set in 2012. For the first quarter of the year, the leading lobbying spender is the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, which spent...

Ethics Reporter: Nearly 700 outlets lobbying General Assembly during first month, spending $2.3 million

A total of 658 businesses and organizations were registered to lobby in the first month of the 2016 General Assembly and together with their legislative agents, they spent over $2.3 million on their lobbying efforts in the first four weeks of the session. The top lobbying spenders for the month were: Kentucky Hospital Association $33,714; Kentucky Chamber of Commerce $31,856; Kentucky Retail Federation...