Direct the department of administration to conduct studies or prepare reports on items related to the committee's duties under par. (a)
Make recommendations to the governor, the legislature, state agencies or local units of government regarding the policies, practices, proposals, legislation and reports reviewed under subd. 1.
and par. (a)
Direct the board of regents of the University of Wisconsin System to prepare and submit to the committee such reports as the committee requests pursuant to the committee's responsibilities under par. (a)
With the concurrence of the joint committee on finance, direct the department of administration to report semiannually to the committee and the joint committee on finance concerning any specific information technology system project which is being designed, developed, tested or implemented and which the committees anticipate will have a total cost to the state exceeding $1,000,000 in the current or any succeeding fiscal biennium. The report shall include all of the following:
The major stages and substages of the project, including an assessment of need, design, implementation and testing stages and their major substages.
The scheduled, estimated and actual completion dates for each major stage and substage of the project.
The budgeted amounts and amounts actually expended on each major stage and substage of the project.
An evaluation of the project, including any problems encountered or risks associated with proceeding to the next stage of the project, if any.
Review any University of Wisconsin System, institution, or college campus information technology project identified in a report submitted to the committee by the Board of Regents under s. 36.59 (7)
to determine whether the project should be continued or implemented. The committee may forward any recommendations regarding the project to the governor and to the legislature under s. 13.172 (2)
REGULATION OF LOBBYING
Lobbying regulated; legislative purpose.
The legislature declares that the operation of an open and responsible government requires that the fullest opportunity be afforded to the people to petition their government for the redress of grievances and to express freely to any officials of the executive or legislative branch their opinions on legislation, on pending administrative rules and other policy decisions by administrative agencies, and on current issues. Essential to the continued functioning of an open government is the preservation of the integrity of the governmental decision-making process. In order to preserve and maintain the integrity of the process, the legislature determines that it is necessary to regulate and publicly disclose the identity, expenditures and activities of persons who hire others or are hired to engage in efforts to influence actions of the legislative and executive branches.
History: 1977 c. 278
; 1989 a. 338
Wisconsin's New Lobby Law. Christianson. Wis. Law. June 1991.
Intended Advocate; Unintended Lobbyist: Regulating Elections and Lobbying in Wisconsin. Christianson. Wis. Law. Oct. 2007.
In this subchapter:
“Administrative action" means the proposal, drafting, development, consideration, promulgation, amendment, repeal or rejection by any agency of any rule promulgated under ch. 227
“Agency" means any board, commission, department, office, society, institution of higher education, council, or committee in the state government, or any authority created in subch. II of ch. 114
or in ch. 231
, or 279
, except that the term does not include a council or committee of the legislature.
“Agency official" means a member, officer, employee or consultant of any agency who as part of such person's official responsibilities participates in any administrative action in other than a solely clerical, secretarial or ministerial capacity.
“Budget bill subject" means a subject specified by the commission that is included in the executive budget bill or bills introduced under s. 16.47
“Business entity" means any organization or enterprise operated for profit, including but not limited to a proprietorship, partnership, firm, business trust, joint venture, syndicate, corporation, limited liability company or association.
“Commission" means the ethics commission.
“Communications media" means newspapers, periodicals, commercial billboards, and radio and television stations, including community antenna television stations.
“Elective state official" means any person who holds an elective state office as defined in s. 5.02 (23)
or has been elected to an elective state office but has not yet taken office. A person who is appointed to fill a vacant elective state office is an elective state official.
“Legislative action" means the development, drafting, introduction, consideration, modification, adoption, rejection, review, enactment or defeat of any bill, resolution, amendment, report, nomination, proposed administrative rule or other matter by the legislature or by either house or any committee, subcommittee, joint or select committee thereof, or by a legislator or employee of the legislature acting in an official capacity. “Legislative action" also means the action of the governor in approving or vetoing any bill or portion thereof, and the action of the governor or any agency in the development of a proposal for introduction in the legislature.
“Legislative employee" means a member or officer of the legislature, an individual employed under s. 13.20
or an employee of a legislative service agency, as defined in s. 16.70 (6)
“Legislative proposal" means a bill, resolution or joint resolution.
“Lobbying" means the practice of attempting to influence legislative or administrative action by oral or written communication with any elective state official, agency official or legislative employee, and includes time spent in preparation for such communication and appearances at public hearings or meetings or service on a committee in which such preparation or communication occurs.
“Lobbying communication" means an oral or written communication with any agency official, elective state official or legislative employee that attempts to influence legislative or administrative action, unless exempted under s. 13.621
“Lobbying expenditure" means an expenditure related to the performance of lobbying, whether received in the form of an advance or subsequent reimbursement. The term includes an expenditure for conducting research or for providing or using information, statistics, studies or analyses in communicating with an official that would not have been incurred but for lobbying.
“Lobbyist" means an individual who is employed by a principal, or contracts for or receives economic consideration, other than reimbursement for actual expenses, from a principal and whose duties include lobbying on behalf of the principal. If an individual's duties on behalf of a principal are not limited exclusively to lobbying, the individual is a lobbyist only if he or she makes lobbying communications on each of at least 5 days within a reporting period.
“Local official" means any person who holds a local office as defined in s. 5.02 (9)
or has been elected to a local office but has not yet taken office, and every person who is employed by a county, city, town, village or school district who is not employed principally to influence legislative or administrative action. A person who is appointed to fill a vacant local office is a local official.
“Partisan elective state office" means the office of governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state treasurer, attorney general, state senator or state representative to the assembly.
“Partisan elective state official" means any individual holding a partisan elective state office.
“Principal" means any person who employs a lobbyist. If an association, corporation, limited liability company or partnership engages a lobbyist, an officer, employee, member, shareholder or partner of the association, corporation, limited liability company or partnership shall not be considered a principal.
“Relative" means a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother, sister, parent-in-law, grandparent-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, spouse, fiance or fiancee.
“Reporting period" means any 6-month period beginning with January 1 and ending with June 30 or beginning with July 1 and ending with December 31.
“Tribal official" means any person who holds an elective office of the government of a federally recognized American Indian tribe or band in this state, or has been elected to such an office but has not yet taken office, and any person who is employed by a federally recognized American Indian tribe or band in this state and who is not employed principally to influence state legislative or administrative action. A person who is appointed to fill a vacant elective office of a federally recognized American Indian tribe or band in this state is a tribal official.
The state and its agencies are not “principals" under sub. (12). 77 Atty. Gen. 126
Complete exemption for certain conduct.
This subchapter does not apply to the following activities:
Lobbying through communications media or by public addresses to audiences made up principally of persons other than legislators or agency officials.
Except as provided in s. 13.68 (1) (a) 5.
, news or feature reporting, paid advertising activities or editorial comment by working members of the press, and the publication or dissemination thereof by a newspaper, book publisher, regularly published periodical, radio station or television station.
Requests by a member or employee of the legislature or by a legislative committee for information from an agency or its employees and the furnishing of the requested information by that agency or its employees.
Lobbying of an agency official by an agency official of a different agency or another agency official of the same agency.
Participation as a member in the deliberations of a committee under s. 227.13
or any committee of the legislature.
Requests by an agency official for information from any person and the furnishing of the information by that person, or requests by any person for information from any agency official and the furnishing of the information by that official.
State agency lobbying activities.
An agency which files a statement under s. 13.695
and an official of the agency who is named in the statement are not subject to s. 13.625
except as provided in s. 13.695
Performance of public official duties.
An elective state official, local official, tribal official, or employee of the legislature is not subject to s. 13.63
, or 13.695
when acting in an official capacity.
(5) Verified statements.
Any principal who or which anticipates making expenditures or incurring obligations in an aggregate amount not exceeding $500 in a calendar year for the purpose of engaging in lobbying activities which are not exempt under this section may so indicate on a verified statement filed with the commission. The statement shall disclose the name, address and telephone number of the principal and a brief description of each cause or interest for which the principal employs a lobbyist. The statement shall also disclose the name and business address of any lobbyist who is employed by such principal to engage in lobbying activities which are not exempt under this section. A statement filed under this subsection expires at midnight on December 31 of each year, or upon revocation by the principal, whichever is earlier. Any principal and any lobbyist acting on behalf of a principal making such a statement is not subject to licensing under s. 13.63
, registration under s. 13.64
, or the reporting requirements under s. 13.68
, if the statement is true. The statement may be revoked at any time by the principal and the principal and any lobbyist employed by the principal are then subject to such requirements as of the date of revocation. The statement shall be revoked no later than 10 days after the date the aggregate expenditures or obligations in the calendar year for the purpose of engaging in such lobbying activities exceed $500. The fee paid under s. 13.75 (1g) (c)
for filing a statement under this subsection shall be credited toward payment of the fee under s. 13.75 (1g) (b)
if the fee under s. 13.75 (1g) (b)
is paid within the same year.
Individual right to lobby.
Nothing in ss. 13.61
may be applied to or interfere with the right of any individual to engage in lobbying:
By communicating solely with a legislator who represents the senate or assembly district in which the individual resides, whether or not such communication is made on behalf of the individual or on behalf of another person.
Participation in events; public official outreach. 13.621(7)(a)
An agency official, an elective state official, or a legislative employee may receive and retain reimbursement or payment of actual and reasonable expenses for a published work or for the presentation of a talk or participation in a meeting related to a topic specified in s. 19.56 (1)
if the payment or reimbursement is paid or arranged by the organizer of the event or the publisher of the work, including a principal or lobbyist.
An agency official, an elective state official, or a legislative employee may attend a meeting with clubs, conventions, special interest groups, political groups, school groups, and other gatherings, without paying admission costs, to discuss and to interpret legislative, administrative, executive, or judicial processes and proposals and issues initiated by or affecting the state legislature, state government, a department, or the judicial branch. An agency official, an elective state official, or a legislative employee may not receive food, beverages, or other items included in the cost of admission unless the person pays the event organizer, including a principal or lobbyist, for the actual cost of the food, beverages, or items.
Prohibited practices. 13.625(1)(1)
No lobbyist may instigate legislative or administrative action for the purpose of obtaining employment in support or opposition to such action or contract to receive or receive compensation dependent in any manner upon the success or failure of any legislative or administrative action.
No lobbyist or principal may furnish to any agency official or legislative employee of the state or to any elective state official or candidate for an elective state office, or to the candidate committee of the official, employee, or candidate:
Food, meals, beverages, money or any other thing of pecuniary value, except that a lobbyist may deliver a contribution or make a personal contribution to a partisan elective state official or candidate for national, state or local office or to the candidate committee of the official or candidate; but a lobbyist may make a personal contribution to which sub. (1m)
applies only as authorized in sub. (1m)
Except as provided in par. (b)
, no lobbyist or principal may do any of the following:
Make a personal contribution to a partisan elective state official for the purpose of promoting the official's election to any national, state, or local office.
Make a personal contribution to a candidate for a partisan elective state office to be filled at the general election or a special election.
Make a personal contribution to the candidate committee of a partisan elective state official or candidate for partisan state elective office.
A lobbyist or principal may make a personal contribution to a partisan elective state official or candidate for partisan elective state office or to the candidate committee of the official or candidate between the first day authorized by law for the circulation of nomination papers as a candidate at a general election or special election and the day of the general election or special election, except that:
A contribution to a candidate for legislative office may be made during that period only if the legislature has concluded its final floorperiod, and is not in special or extraordinary session.
A contribution by a lobbyist to the lobbyist's candidate committee for partisan elective state office may be made at any time.
No candidate for an elective state office, elective state official, agency official, or legislative employee of the state may solicit or accept anything of pecuniary value from a lobbyist or principal, except as permitted under this section or s. 13.621
. No candidate committee of a candidate for state office may accept anything of pecuniary value from a lobbyist or principal, except as permitted for such a candidate under this section or s. 13.621
This section does not apply to any of the following:
Notwithstanding sub. (1g)
, the furnishing by a principal of transportation, lodging, food, meals, beverages, or any other thing of pecuniary value that is also made available to the general public.
Compensation paid or the furnishing of employee benefits by a principal to an employee who is a candidate for an elective state office but who does not hold such an office if the employee is neither an agency official nor legislative employee, and if the principal or employee can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that the principal's employment of the employee and the compensation and employee benefits paid to the employee are unrelated to the candidacy. If the employee was employed by the principal prior to the first day of the 12th month commencing before the deadline for the filing of nomination papers for the office sought and the employment continues uninterrupted, without augmentation of compensation or employee benefits, except as provided by a preexisting employment agreement, it is rebuttably presumed that the employment and compensation and benefits paid are unrelated to the candidacy.
Food, meals, beverages, or entertainment provided by the governor when acting in an official capacity.
The furnishing of anything of pecuniary value by a lobbyist or principal to a relative of the lobbyist or principal or to an individual who resides in the same household as the lobbyist or principal or the receipt of anything of pecuniary value by that relative or individual residing in the same household as the lobbyist or principal.
The furnishing of anything of pecuniary value by a principal that is a local governmental unit to a legislative official or an agency official who is an elected official of that local governmental unit, or the solicitation or acceptance thereof by such a legislative official or agency official, in an amount not exceeding the amount furnished to other similarly situated elected officials of the same local governmental unit.
The furnishing of a per diem or reimbursement for actual and reasonable expenses by a principal that is a local governmental unit to a legislative official or an agency official who is an appointed official of that local governmental unit, or the solicitation or acceptance thereof by such a legislative official or agency official, in an amount not exceeding the amount furnished to other similarly situated appointed officials of the same local governmental unit.
The furnishing of anything of pecuniary value by a lobbyist or principal to an employee of that lobbyist or principal who is a legislative official or an agency official solely because of membership on a state commission, board, council, committee, or similar body if the thing of pecuniary value is not in excess of that customarily provided by the employer to similarly situated employees and if the legislative official or agency official receives no compensation for his or her services other than a per diem or reimbursement for actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of his or her duties or the receipt of anything of pecuniary value by that legislative official or agency official under those circumstances.
The furnishing of anything of pecuniary value by a principal to an officer or employee of the University of Wisconsin System, or the solicitation or acceptance thereof by such an officer or employee, for service as a member of the governing body of the principal, in an amount not exceeding the amount furnished to other members of the governing body for the same service.
The furnishing of educational or informational material by a lobbyist or principal to an elected state official, legislative official, or agency official, or acceptance thereof by an elected state official, legislative official, or agency official.
The solicitation of anything of pecuniary value for the benefit of the endangered resources program, as defined in s. 71.10 (5) (a) 2.
, by an agency official who administers the program.