Lobbyist spending tops $202K with a week to go in the session

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Spending by lobbyists and their employers topped $202,000 as the 2016 legislative session entered its final week.

Every week New Mexico In Depth tallies lobbyist spending – at least that spending over $500, which must be reported within 48 hours. In 2015, lobbyists and their employers spent more than $818,000 to wine, dine and gift public officials.

This week’s big spender is the AFL-CIO, which spent $15,000 Monday on digital advertising opposing the “right-to-work” bill. The spending could probably be called a success, since the bill died in a Senate committee on Tuesday.

Other spenders that filed reports this week:

  • The union representing the film industry spent $8,425 on a Monday reception and after-party.
  • The Fort Sill Apache Tribe spent $3,873 on a Feb. 4 reception at the Inn and Spa at Loretto.
  • Ruth Hoffman spent $1,927 on Feb. 4 for the bishop’s legislative luncheon at the La Fonda. She lobbies for the Rocky Mountain Synod-Evangelical Lutheran Church. 
  • Jeff Dye spent $4,494  and Marla Shoats spent $1,688 on Feb. 5 for dinner at the Bull Ring for the House Appropriations and Finance Committee members, staff and guests. Dye represents the New Mexico Hospital Association. Shoats represents Bernalillo County and a variety of other clients.
  • Ty Trujillo spent spent $4,156 for a Feb. 4 reception at the Bull Ring on behalf of the New Mexico Association of Community Colleges.

Although lawmakers have loads of work before Thursday’s noon adjournment, there’s still time for entertainment. The annual 100 Bill Party is tonight at the Santa Fe Convention Center, and lobbyists are sure to provide sustenance for committees working through the evening.

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