Michigan government sector lobbying

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Michigan government sector lobbying or Michigan taxpayer-funded lobbying is government to government lobbying. Michigan counties, Michigan cities, Michigan school districts, public facilities, and associations of public employees frequently use public funds to influence legislation and appropriations at the state and federal levels.

This practice is contentious because public funds are spent to lobby for an agenda not subject to direct approval by voters, and outcomes may be contrary to taxpayers' benefit.

It can be hard to track public lobbying money. It can go through many different routes before ending up as a contract for lobbyists. For example, the Early Child Investment Corporation (ECIC), a government entity created in 2005, is involved in promoting specific legislation and in influencing law makers.[1]

Lobbying the legislature

2012

About $556,000 in taxpayer money was used by state government agencies to lobby the Michigan Legislature in 2012, according to the Lansing Journal.[2] The money is 1.5 percent of the $36.6 million spent overall on lobbying in Michigan in 2012.

By comparison, 93 percent of that overall total was reported by special interest groups, companies and public relations businesses, whose purpose is to influence public policy. The margin between private-sector and government lobbying has been consistent over the years.

Governor's office

In 2012, Governor Snyder's executive office reported $96,000 on lobbying expenses in each of 2011 and 2012, Weiss said. That figure reflects a portion of the salaries for Snyder's deputy directors of legislative affairs. They monitor bills as they move through the House and Senate and work with lawmakers to advance Snyder's priorities, he said.[2]

In 2008, the Office of the Governor of Michigan Jennifer Granholm spent $63,672 of taxpayer-money on lobbying.[3]

The Department of Education, an agency in the Governor's Office, increased its lobbying budget by 49% from 2007 to 2008. The Department of Environmental Quality increased its lobbying by 12%, while the Governor's Michigan Economic Development Corporation expanded its lobbying budget by 106%.[3]

Michigan Department of Treasury

The Michigan Department of Treasury increased its lobbying budget by 2% fromn 2007 to 2008 to a total of $92,532.[3]

State schools and lobbying

Michigan State University increased its lobbying budget 25% last year, while Macomb Community College's lobbying went up by 128%. Many local school districts lobby with taxpayer-dollars, including Oakland County's ISD which increased its lobbying funds by 80%.[3]

Libraries

The Detroit Public Library spent $44,939 in 2008, up 79% from 2007, to lobby for its interests.[3]

Taxpayer-funded lobbying associations

The following is a list of Michigan government sector lobbying associations by type:

City and municipal

County

Emergency services

Health

Justice

Planning

Public officials

Utilities

School

Services

Other


External links

References