Ethics Advisory Opinion No. 3
August 22, 2000
a single Lobbyist Registration Amendment Form may be submitted with a matrix
pursuant to Part E of the Ethics Code.
Earl has asked whether a single Lobbyist Registration Amendment may be submitted
with an attached matrix pursuant to Part E, Section 6(a)(1) of the Ethics Code.
The following facts are presented:
Earl is a registered lobbyist with the City, and currently, has on file
approximately 80 Lobbyist Registration Forms as required under Part E, Section 5
of the Code. Recently, Kenneth W.
Brown, a former registered lobbyist with Kaufman
& Associates, Inc., joined Mr. Earl’s firm as a shareholder, changing
the name of said firm from Earl &
Associates, A Professional Corporation, to Earl & Brown, A Professional Corporation.
The issue is whether a single Lobbyist Registration Amendment Form may be
submitted with an attached matrix in amending each of the lobbyist’s
E, Section 5(a) of the Ethics Code states that “[a] person [who engages in lobbying and is paid more than $1,000 in
a calendar quarter or expends more than $1,000 in a calendar quarter] must file
a separate registration form for each
client.” In addition to the
initial registration form, a registered lobbyist must file a separate quarterly
activity report regarding the registrant’s lobbying activities for each client
and a subsequent annual registration form pursuant to Part E, Section 6(a) and
Part E, Section 5(c), respectively. The intent of the Ethics Code in requiring
the various forms is to provide disclosure of not only who is representing whom,
but also the municipal question and activities involved.
in circumstances may occur, however, where one individual leaves a firm and
joins another, as is the case here. This
change in circumstances requires an amendment to the registration form of the
former firm, Earl & Associates,
pursuant to Section 6(a)(1). Section
6(a)(1) states that “[ ] any changes or
updates in the information provided in the most recent registration statement
filed pursuant to Section 5 [shall be included on the lobbyist’s quarterly
activity report].” The addition of a new shareholder and/or the change in
firm names may be accomplished through a matrix format for existing
clients. However, for new clients of Earl &
Brown, a new registration form is required to be filed, including, but not
limited to, those former clients of Mr. Brown who have transferred from Kaufman
& Associates to Earl & Brown.
Moreover, in January of each year, Earl
& Brown must file a separate annual registration form as required under
Part E, Section 5(c) of the Code for each client.
change in circumstances that requires an amendment to a Lobbyist Registration
Form may be done through a matrix format of a lobbying firm’s quarterly
activity report as provided in Part E, Section 6(a)(1) of the Code for existing
clients. However, for new clients, a separate
Lobbyist Registration Form in accordance with Part E, Section 5(a) must be
filed. In addition, the firm is
required, on an annual basis, to file subsequent registration forms for each
of its clients for whom the firm had previously filed on behalf of and/or had
been required to file an initial registration form.
Arthur Downey, Vice-Chair