The ripple effect of firing lobby staffers to free up funds for the ladies that lunch is starting.
The blog has received multiple tips that lobby clients are receiving phone calls from J-Joke staffer "Lori" who appears to be coercing clients to file 2010 client semi annual reports by threatining "hearings" if the client doesn't "get the report in" and agree to a $2000 settlement.
Who is "Lori" and why are these types of phone calls being made?
Lori is Lori Donadio. She is a clerk in the investigations unit (to the extent there is one) and if you need to speak with her she is available 3, 4, 5 or 6 times a day on Broadway with the rest of the J-Joke staffers taking their smoking breaks.
Why is she making the calls? Because the lobby filing unit is down to 3 supervisors, one of whom was just transferred into the unit last summer. What happened to the rest of the old Lobby Commission program unit? Fired last wednesday.
End result? a soon to be huge backlog and a slew of mistakes being made by people without experience trying to do jobs they were not trained for (crosstraining).
For example one of the clients who received a Lori was not the client of a registered lobbyist during the relevant reporting period and therefore did not have to file. Oops.
Another got a warning letter that gave them 15 days to get the report in but then 10 days later got a "substantial basis investigation" letter . Oops must be that the crosstraining hasn't gotten to the chapter on the new math.
And speaking of new math the recently enacted guidelines capped late fees at $1000 yet Lori is peddling $2000 settlements or hearings.
It's bound to get worse. Alert your clients to be on the lookout for a lori and be sure they are actually late with the filing before you do agree to a settlement.