So how has Amendment 41 affected lobbying at the capitol?
January was the first month under the new law, which restricts lobbyists from giving gifts to public officials.
And according to recent government filings, lobbyists who have a history of giving are saving their money. From August to December, lobbying firm Axiom Strategies, Inc spent approximately $440 lobbying lawmakers at the capitol, with expenses totaling over $50 for each month. But during the month of January, Axiom didn’t spend anything.
Same goes for lobbyist Steven Durham. Since July, Durham has spent $1,126 lobbying legislators, with expenses totaling over $50 each month. But despite making almost $60,000 in January, Durham didn’t spend any of it on lawmakers.
It’s a similar scenario for other lobbyists who routinely give small gifts to politicians during the course of the session.
Amendment 41 may be forcing lobbyists to wait for the right time to spend their capped expenses, and January just wasn’t a good month for it.