Oklahoma government sector lobbying
This practice is controversial because public funds are spent to lobby for an agenda not subject to direct approval by voters, and outcomes may be contrary taxpayers benefit.
Success of lobbying
Lobbyists are successful because of their ability to apply political pressure. They allegedly spread rumors about legislators that do not support their issues to hurt them politically.
In addition to this, the legislature does not have the resources to look into all of the proposed issues that public entities advocate for. Legislators also tend to hear more from proponents of new or more spending, than opponents to it. Therefore, it becomes easier to support spending and more government than to oppose it.
Some have recommended more transparency as a step that would help curb frivolous spending. Currently, many nonprofits are exempt from disclosure requirements regarding their relationships with lobbyists. Full disclosure should be required with documents openly available on the internet.
Also, the legislature should give itself tools to scrutinize the operations and spending requests of government agencies and private organizations.
Taxpayer-funded lobbying associations
- County Officers and Deputies Association
- National Solid Wastes Management Association
- Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts
- Oklahoma Lakes and Countries Association