Today's Law As Amended


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SB-459 Political Reform Act of 1974: lobbying.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 86114 of the Government Code, as amended by Section 38 of Chapter 662 of the Statutes of 2018, is amended to read:

86114.
 (a) Lobbying firms shall file periodic reports containing all of the following:
(1) The full name, address, email address, and telephone number of the lobbying firm.
(2) (A)  The full name, business address, and telephone number of each person who contracted with the lobbying firm for lobbying services, a description of the specific lobbying interests of the person, and the total payments, including fees and the reimbursement of expenses, received from the person for lobbying services during the reporting period.
(B) (i) For each client, the report shall indicate each bill or administrative action, with regard to which a partner, owner, officer, or employee of the lobbying firm engaged in direct communication with an elective state official, agency official, or legislative official on behalf of that client for the purpose of influencing legislative or administrative action during the reporting period, either by reference to its legislative or administrative identification number if one exists or by brief description if no such number exists.
(ii) For each bill or issue lobbying advertisement related to a bill, the report shall indicate one of the following that most closely describes the client position publicly communicated: “support,” “oppose,” “support if amended,” “oppose unless amended,” “neutral,” “neutral seeking amendment,” “neutral expressing concerns.” The report shall list in chronological order any changes in position during that reporting period but shall not be required to disclose the date of any change in position. A reasonable and good faith effort to comply with this subparagraph shall be sufficient to demonstrate full compliance.
(iii) For each client, the report shall indicate each bill or administrative action, with regard to which a partner, owner, officer, or employee of the lobbying firm engaged in issue lobbying advertising as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 86119 on behalf of that client.
(iv) The report shall not include bills or administrative actions which the lobbying firm is only watching or monitoring or bills or administrative actions which the lobbying firm has not attempted to influence during the reporting period.
(v) The requirements of this subparagraph do not apply to a placement agent, as defined in Section 82047.3.
(3) The total amount of payments received for lobbying services during the period.
(4) A periodic report completed and verified by each lobbyist in the lobbying firm pursuant to Section 86113.
(5) Each activity expense incurred by the lobbying firm including those reimbursed by a person who contracts with the lobbying firm for lobbying services. A total of all activity expenses of the lobbying firm and all of its lobbyists shall be included.
(6) If the lobbying firm subcontracts with another lobbying firm for lobbying services:
(A) The full name, address, email address, and telephone number of the subcontractor.
(B) The name of the person for whom the subcontractor was retained to lobby.
(C) The total amount of all payments made to the subcontractor.
(7) The date, amount, and the name of the recipient of any contribution of one hundred dollars ($100) or more made by the filer to an elected state officer, a state candidate, a committee controlled by an elected state officer or state candidate, or a committee primarily formed to support or oppose those officers or candidates. If this contribution is reported by the lobbying firm or by a committee sponsored by the lobbying firm in a campaign statement filed pursuant to Chapter 4 which is required to be filed with the Secretary of State, the filer may report only the name of the committee and the identification number of the committee.
(8) Any other information required by the commission consistent with the purposes and provisions of this chapter.
(b) In addition to the information required by subdivision (a), lobbying firms which qualify pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 82038.5 shall also report the name and title of each partner, owner, officer, and employee of the lobbying firm who, on at least five separate occasions during the reporting period, engaged in direct communication with any elective state official, legislative official, or agency official, for the purpose of influencing legislative or administrative action on behalf of a person who contracts with the lobbying firm for lobbying services. This does not include individuals whose actions were purely clerical.

SEC. 2.

 Section 86116 of the Government Code, as amended by Section 39 of Chapter 662 of the Statutes of 2018, is amended to read:

86116.
 Every person described in Section 86115 shall file periodic reports containing the following information:
(a) The name, business address, email address, and telephone number of the lobbyist employer or other person filing the report.
(b) The total amount of payments to each lobbying firm.
(c) The total amount of all payments to lobbyists employed by the filer.
(d) (1)  A description of the specific lobbying interests of the filer.
(2) The information required by subparagraph (B) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 86114. A person described in Section 86115 may, through a means adopted by the commission, refer to and incorporate by reference the information contained in a report filed by the person’s lobbying firm pursuant to Section 86114 to meet the requirement of this paragraph.
(e) A periodic report completed and verified by each lobbyist employed by a lobbyist employer pursuant to Section 86113.
(f) Each activity expense of the filer. A total of all activity expenses of the filer shall be included.
(g) The date, amount, and the name of the recipient of any contribution of one hundred dollars ($100) or more made by the filer to an elected state officer, a state candidate, or a committee controlled by an elected state officer or state candidate, or a committee primarily formed to support or oppose the officer or candidate. If this contribution is reported by the filer or by a committee sponsored by the filer in a campaign statement filed pursuant to Chapter 4 which is required to be filed with the Secretary of State, the filer may report only the name of the committee, and the identification number of the committee.
(h) (1) Except as set forth in paragraph (2), the total of all other payments to influence legislative or administrative action including overhead expenses and all payments to employees who spend 10 percent or more of their compensated time in any one month in activities related to influencing legislative or administrative action.
(2) A filer that makes payments to influence a ratemaking or quasi-legislative proceeding before the Public Utilities Commission, as defined in subdivision (b) or (c), respectively, of Section 82002, may, in lieu of reporting those payments pursuant to paragraph (1), report only the portion of those payments made to or for the filer’s attorneys for time spent appearing as counsel and preparing to appear as counsel, or to or for the filer’s witnesses for time spent testifying and preparing to testify, in this type of Public Utilities Commission proceeding. This alternative reporting of these payments made during a calendar month is not required to include payments made to an attorney or witness who is an employee of the filer if less than 10 percent of his  the attorney’s  or her witness’s  compensated time in that month was spent in appearing, testifying, or preparing to appear or testify before the Public Utilities Commission in a ratemaking or quasi-legislative proceeding. For the purposes of this paragraph, time spent preparing to appear or preparing to testify does not include time spent preparing written testimony.
(i) Any other information required by the commission consistent with the purposes and provisions of this chapter.

SEC. 3.

 Section 86117 of the Government Code is amended to read:

86117.
 (a) Reports required by Sections 86114 and 86116 shall be filed during the month following each calendar quarter. The period covered shall be from the first day of January of each new biennial legislative session through the last day of the calendar quarter prior to the month during which the report is filed, except as specified in subdivision (b), and except that the period covered shall not include any information reported in previous reports filed by the same person. When total amounts are required to be reported, totals shall be stated both for the period covered by the statement and for the entire legislative session to date.
(b) The period covered by the first report a person is required to file pursuant to Sections 86114 and 86116 shall begin with the first day of the calendar quarter in which the filer first registered or qualified. On the first report a person is required to file, the total amount shall be stated for the entire calendar quarter covered by the first report.
(c) (1) During the period beginning 60 days before the date the Legislature is scheduled to adjourn in a calendar year for the interim recess or final recess, a person described in Section 86115 shall file a report within 24 hours of retaining a lobbying firm to influence legislative action during those 60 days, including the amount to be paid to the lobbying firm pursuant to a contract for lobbying.
(2) A person described in paragraph (1) shall file a supplemental report within 24 hours of engaging in direct communication with an elective state official, agency official, or legislative official on behalf of that client for the purpose of influencing legislative action.
(A) The supplemental report shall indicate the name or number of each bill, and indicate one of the following that most closely describes the client position publicly communicated: “support,” “oppose,” “support if amended,” “oppose unless amended,” “neutral,” “neutral seeking amendment,” “neutral expressing concerns.”
(B) The supplemental report shall be made public within 24 hours of receipt, either through the internet or distribution or posting of the documents in portable document format (PDF) or summaries of the documents online.
(3) The reports required by this subdivision may be filed by electronic mail or other electronic means and original signatures shall not be required.

SEC. 4.

 Section 86118 of the Government Code, as amended by Section 40 of Chapter 662 of the Statutes of 2018, is amended to read:

86118.
 (a)  Reports required by Sections 86114 and 86116 shall be filed online or electronically with the Secretary of State.
(b) Original documents may be signed and filed with electronic signatures.

SEC. 5.

 Section 86119 is added to the Government Code, to read:

86119.
 (a) (1) “Issue lobbying advertisement” as used in this chapter means any advertisement as defined in subdivision (h) that is authorized and paid for, directly or indirectly, by a person described in Section 86115 and that refers to one or more clearly identified pending legislative or administrative actions and does any of the following:
(A) Solicits or urges persons other than the person described in Section 86115 to communicate directly with an elective state official, agency official, or legislative official for the primary purpose of attempting to influence state legislative or administrative action.
(B) Refers to a state legislative or administrative action and urges its defeat, amendment, postponement, enactment, or promulgation.
(2) A pending legislative or administrative action is clearly identified if the communication states a legislative or administrative identification number, official title, or popular name associated with the action. In addition, the action is clearly identified if the communication refers to the subject matter of the action and either states that the measure is before an elective state official, agency official, or legislative official for a vote or decision or, taken as a whole and in context, unambiguously refers to the action.
(b) (1) An issue lobbying advertisement shall clearly and conspicuously indicate in the advertisement the person described in Section 86115 that authorized and paid for the advertisement as the source or payor of the advertisement. If the person who authorized and paid for the issue lobbying advertisement is a lobbying firm, the lobbyist employer on whose behalf the issue lobbying advertisement was authorized and paid for shall be disclosed in place of the lobbying firm.
(2) An issue lobbying advertisement complies with this subdivision if the communication does either of the following:
(A) Clearly and conspicuously identifies the person described in Section 86115 as the sender, broadcaster, or creator of the communication.
(B) Includes the words “Paid for by” or a similar phrase followed by the name of the person.
(c) A copy of any issue lobbying advertisement which clearly identifies an elective state official, agency official, or legislative official shall be provided by mail, email, or hand delivery to that elective state official, agency official, or legislative official within 72 hours of being communicated.
(d) (1) A person described in Section 86115 that incurs cumulative costs equal to or exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000) for issue lobbying advertisements in a calendar quarter shall file a report with the Secretary of State within 72 hours. The report shall be filed with the Secretary of State by online or electronic transmission only using the online filing system described in subdivision (b) of Section 84602.
(2) The cost of an issue lobbying advertisement shall include actual costs attributable to the communications, but shall not include the payment of salary for staff time.
(3) A report required by this subdivision shall include the following information:
(A) The dates or period of time that each issue lobbying advertisement was communicated.
(B) The legislative or administrative identification numbers associated with the legislative or administrative action that was the subject of the lobbying issue advertisement. If an action is not associated with an identification number, a short description of the subject matter of the action.
(C) For each legislative or administrative action for which there were issue lobbying advertisements, the position on the legislative or administrative action urged on the lobbying issue advertisement, which may include “support,” “oppose,” “support if amended,” “oppose unless amended,” “neutral,” “neutral seeking amendment,” or a similar short description.
(D) For each legislative or administrative action for which there were issue lobbying advertisements, the medium of the issue lobbying advertisements which referenced the action, which may include, for example, direct mail, text messages, television advertisements, radio advertisements, social media advertisements, search engine advertisements, or other online advertisements.
(E) For each legislative or administrative action for which there were issue lobbying advertisements, the cumulative cost of the issue lobbying advertisements they appear in. If an issue lobbying advertisement referenced more than one legislative or administrative action, then the cost of the advertisement for purposes of this paragraph shall be apportioned between those actions.
(F) Any other relevant information determined by regulations adopted by the commission.
(4) Issue lobbying advertisement costs shall be reported on subsequent periodic lobbying reports without regard to reports filed pursuant to this subdivision.
(e) The commission may, by regulation, increase the dollar amounts specified in this section.
(f) This section is not intended and shall not be construed to expand the meaning of “lobbyist” as defined in Section 82039 or “lobbyist employer” as defined in Section 82039.5.
(g) This section does not apply to a placement agent, as defined in Section 82047.3.
(h) For purposes of this section, “advertisement” means any general or public communication and does not include and shall not be construed as applying to communications exempted from the definition of advertisement in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 84501. Types of issue lobbying advertisements include radio, television, and video advertisements; print advertisements; billboards; electronic media advertisements; text messages that are sent with the assistance of mass distribution technology, including a text messaging platform; online platforms; a prerecorded telephone call made to more than 200 persons; a substantially similar email, text message, or other electronic communication that is sent to over 200 recipients; or any other substantially similar communication determined by regulations adopted by the commission.
SEC. 6.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.
SEC. 7.
 Sections 1 to 5, inclusive, of this act shall not become operative until one year after the date the Secretary of State certifies an online filing and disclosure system pursuant to paragraph (7) of subdivision (b) of Section 84602 of the Government Code or January 1, 2023, whichever is later.
SEC. 8.
 The Legislature finds and declares that this bill furthers the purposes of the Political Reform Act of 1974 within the meaning of subdivision (a) of Section 81012 of the Government Code.