Cutter and Weissman bill will increase reporting requirements

(May 20) – Rep. Lisa Cutter and Rep. Mike Weissman’s bill to improve lobbyist transparency was signed into law today. This new law will increase the reporting requirements for lobbyists.

“Recent reports show that special interests spent over $30 million to lobby the legislature. That’s an exorbitant amount of money. The danger of this is that it gives lobbyist access and influence that the general public doesn’t have,” said Rep. Cutter, D-Evergreen. “If money equals speech, then the public deserves to know where that money is coming from.”

HB19-1248 requires more frequent reporting of relevant information by professional lobbyists, clarifies that lobbyists that are also attorneys are not privy to attorney-client confidentiality, and it clarifies that a professional lobbyist must disclose who their ultimate client is, i.e., disclose the name of the client who employs or retains the professional services of the lobbyist.

“We as elected officials serve as guardians and protectors of the public trust. There is not a tremendous amount of public trust in political processes right now,” said Rep. Weissman, D-Aurora. “This new law will bring commonsense transparency to lobbying practices at the capitol.”

Sen. Mike Foote, D-Lafayette, is the Senate co-prime sponsor of the new law.

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