SENATE, No. 1404

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 11, 2016

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator† LORETTA WEINBERG

District 37 (Bergen)

Assemblyman† GORDON M. JOHNSON

District 37 (Bergen)

Assemblyman† DANIEL R. BENSON

District 14 (Mercer and Middlesex)

Assemblyman† RAJ MUKHERJI

District 33 (Hudson)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman Handlin, Assemblymen Space and McKeon

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Requires governmental affairs agents to disclose on notice of representation form compensation amount received from State or local government entities; requires notice to be posted on Internet site of Election Law Enforcement Commission.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† As introduced.

††


An Act concerning disclosure by governmental affairs agents and amending P.L.1971, c.183.

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.††† Section 4 of P.L.1971, c.183 (C.52:13C-21) is amended to read as follows:

†††† 4.††† a† Any person who, on or after the effective date of P.L.1991, c.243 or on or after the effective date of P.L.2004, c.27 for the purpose of influencing governmental processes, is employed, retained or engages himself as a governmental affairs agent shall, prior to any communication with, or the making of any expenditures providing a benefit to, a member of the Legislature, legislative staff, the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the Governor's staff, or an officer or staff member of the Executive Branch, and in any event within 30 days of the appropriate effective date or of such employment, retainer or engagement, whichever occurs later, file a signed notice of representation with the Election Law Enforcement Commission in such detail as the commission may prescribe, identifying himself and persons by whom he is employed or retained, and the persons in whose interests he is working, and the general nature of his proposed services as a governmental affairs agent for such persons, which notice shall contain the following information:

†††† (1)†† his name, business address and regular occupation;

†††† (2)†† the name, business address and occupation or principal business of the person from whom he receives compensation for acting as a governmental affairs agent;

†††† (3) (a) the name, business address and occupation or principal business of any person in whose interest he acts as a governmental affairs agent in consideration of the aforesaid compensation, if such person is other than the person from whom said compensation is received; and

†††† (b)†† if a person, identified under paragraph (2) of this subsection as one from whom the governmental affairs agent receives compensation, is a membership organization or corporation whose name or occupation so identified does not, either explicitly or by virtue of the nature of the principal business in which the organization or its members, or the corporation or its shareholders, is commonly known to be engaged, clearly reveal the primary specific economic, social, political, or other interest which the organization or corporation may reasonably be understood to seek to advance or protect through its employment, retainer, or engagement of the governmental affairs agent, a description of that primary economic, social, political, or other interest and a list of the persons having organizational or financial control of the organization or corporation, including the names, mailing addresses and occupations, respectively, of those persons. The commission shall promulgate rules and regulations to govern the content of any information required to be disclosed under this subparagraph and shall take such steps as are reasonably necessary to ensure that all such information is, in accordance with those rules and regulations, both accurate and complete.

†††† Any list of governmental affairs agents and their principals required to be published quarterly under subsection h. of section 6 of P.L.1971, c.183 (C.52:13C-23) shall include, for each such principal for whom it is not otherwise apparent, the primary specific interest which the principal may reasonably be understood to seek to advance or protect through its engagement of the governmental affairs agent and the category of persons required to file additional information, as that interest and such category shall have been determined under subparagraph (b) of this paragraph;

†††† (4)†† whether the person from whom he receives said compensation employs him solely as a governmental affairs agent, or whether he is a regular employee performing services for his employer which include but are not limited to the influencing of legislation, regulation or governmental processes;

†††† (5)†† the length of time for which he will be receiving compensation from the person aforesaid for acting as a governmental affairs agent, if said length of time can be ascertained at the time of filing;

†††† (6)†† the type of legislation, regulation or governmental process or the particular legislation, regulation or governmental process in relation to which he is to act as governmental affairs agent in consideration of the aforesaid compensation, and any particular legislation, regulation or governmental process or type of legislation, regulation or governmental process which he is to promote or oppose;

†††† (7)†† (Deleted by amendment, P.L.2004, c.38).

†††† (8)†† When a governmental affairs agent is employed or retained by any State or local government agency, department, board, bureau, commission, authority, board of education, institution of higher education, or any other government entity in this State, the notice of representation shall also indicate the compensation amount received or to be received by the governmental affairs agent from the government entity.† Each notice of representation indicating that the governmental affairs agent is employed or retained by a government entity shall be posted by the commission on the commissionís Internet site within 30 days of filing, and shall be easily available for public inspection through that Internet site.

†††† b.††† Any governmental affairs agent who receives compensation from more than one person for his services as a governmental affairs agent shall file a separate notice of representation with respect to each such person; except that a governmental affairs agent whose fee for acting as such in respect to the same legislation, regulation or governmental processor type of legislation, regulation or governmental process is paid or contributed to by more than one person may file a single statement, in which he shall detail the name, business address and occupation or principal business of each person so paying or contributing.

(cf: P.L.2009, c.66, s.38)

 

†††† 2.††† This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill amends the "Legislative and Governmental Process Activities Disclosure Act," P.L.1971, c.183 (C.52:13C-18 et seq.), to require a governmental affairs agent to disclose the dollar amount received from a State or local government entity when employed or retained by that State or local government entity for the purpose of influencing governmental processes.† The bill requires the dollar amount received by the governmental affairs agent from the State or local government entity to be reported in the notice of representation form already required by law to be filed by governmental affairs agents with the Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC).† Furthermore, the bill requires ELEC to post on its Internet site for easy public access each notice of representation containing information on the dollar amount paid to a governmental affairs agent by a State or local government entity.