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Texas Lobbyists and Texas Ethics Commission Lobby Oversight Rules

Recently the San Antonio Business Journal ran an article that reviewed current ethical regulations for Texas lobbyists by the Texas Ethics Commission.

The following rules apply to all Texas lobbyists:

  1. Lobbyists must register in Texas if they receive more than $1000 dollars in a fiscal quarter as payment for their work.
  2. Lobbyists must register in Texas if they spend more than $500 lobbying for a cause or organization.

If either of these are true, a lobbyist must register himself or herself with the Texas Ethics Commission.

Moreover, the Texas Ethics Commission has an online database of lobbyists that is searchable and open to the public. Users may search by lobbyist, company, and even run geographical searches. All lobbyists are listed along with their current clients and payment figures.

So exactly what is a lobbyist? The Texas Employment Commission says that a lobbyist is a person who engages in direct communication with government officials and lawmakers with a view to influencing the state legislative process. Direct communication includes all forms of communication, including emails, phone calls, and of course direct meetings.

The Texas Lobby Group is proud to say that our lobbyists are duly registered with the TEC. Moreover, we support the work of the ethical oversight commission for lobbyists. Honest lobbyists who abide by the rules are a necessary part of our political process. Citizens have a LEGAL RIGHT AND MORAL RESPONSIBILITY to communicate their desires and opinions to their legislators using all legal channels. We fully support a fair and open reporting of our lobbying activities and the good work of the Texas Ethics Commission in overseeing them.