Friday, December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas

For those of you waiting for this years version of Twas the night before rhyme I have to disappoint you.  I've just been too busy servicing my clients, what with all the growth I have experienced and all the issues JJOKE has created.

But that's not to say it has not been a merry holiday season as I just received written notification from JJOKE Director of Lobbying Andrew Bechard that he has withdrawn 36 separate late fee billing notices that JJOKE had wrongfully imposed on my clients.  In response to my written objections pointing out how JJOKE was wrong in imposing the late fees in the first place Mr. Bechard (whom I have never met) admitted that the late fees never should have been imposed by JJOKE staff to begin with and stated that they had reviewed my arguments citing the proper application of the Lobby Act and "arguing against the late fees . . . and find them to be persuasive".

Now ordinarily I would share with the regulated community the basis for my arguments since I am sure JJOKE has imposed late fees on many other lobbyists under the same legal theory I just successfully challenged, but that wouldn't be fair to the clients that pay me for that advice and protection.  Suffice to say if JJOKE has imposed a late fee you don't think was fair call me for a consultation.

Twas the night before Christmas and all thru the regulated community
Lobbyists have realized its cost effective and safer to just hire ME

Monday, December 18, 2017

Commission Meeting Quiz

Following up on the last post discussing the jackasses at JJOKE trying to discuss proposed regulations that they lack the authority to issue or the knowledge and intelligence to discuss I thought I would pose a simple question and see if any of the Jgeniuses could answer it at tomorrows JJOKE meeting also known as the gathering of the clowns.

The proposed regulations state that a coalition is :

"Coalition means a group of otherwise-unaffiliated entities or members who pool funds for the primary purpose of engaging in Lobbying Activities on behalf of the members of the Coalition."

The proposed regulations then state:

"A Coalition that expends or incurs more than $5,000 in annual Compensation and Expenses related to Lobbying Activity shall either:

(a) File a Lobbying report with the Commission identifying itself as a Lobbyist and/or a Client, provided the Coalition identifies a Responsible Party and it maintains an up-to-date written instrument with the Commission disclosing all Coalition members who exceed $5,000 in cumulative annual Lobbying compensation and expenses; or

(b) If the Coalition does not file its own Lobbying report, then each member who is required to file a Lobbying report (either through the Coalition activity and/or other Lobbying Activity engaged in by the member) must disclose in such report their own contribution to such Coalition, including the contribution amount and name of the Coalition to which it contributed."

With that definition in play here is the question

How does a coalition spend or receive funds?

Simple question lets see how McAuliffe and the rest of the mensa types answer it.

Here's a hint go to your local bank and try to open an account in the name of a coalition as it is defined above.

Good luck.

Unless JJOKE expects coalitions to use cash or bitcoin they will be unable to spend or receive funds.

And before you say you are just following the old lobby commission opinion allowing this activity I wrote that opinion BEFORE source of funding was required.

All a coalition is, is a fancy way to allow an alias to be used.

If you can spend or receive funds you actually exist and should register and report under your actual corporate or individual existence.

Maybe McAuliffe was on to something with his unincorporated 501c3 nonsense. 

Try to contribute a campaign donation in the name of a coalition and see what happens.

I look forward to tomorrows JCOPE meeting and a lively discussion about coalitions.

Friday, December 1, 2017

A camel is a horse designed by a committee and JJOKE regulations are laws designed by jackasses

Anyone that watched the latest JJOKE meeting was treated to the glaring reality that JJOKE commissioners have no clue what the Lobby Act they are supposed to be enforcing actually says.

And no I'm not talking about the most recent flip flop where they publicly emasculated their executive director and said that the proposed lobby regulations now do have the force and effect of law even though Agata was very clear last time that they were merely guidance.  The fact that Mike Rozen was so clear that the proposed regs are actually regulations is a good thing.  There can be no doubt now about the issue for my Article 78.  I say JJOKE doesn't have the authority to issue lobby regulations JJOKE says they do, we will let a court decide.

No I'm talking about how foolish the JJOKE commissioners that commented on the proposed regulations sounded.  They proved the adage that it is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than speak and remove all doubt.

Case in point Commissioner McAuliffe.  I had heard from some friends that knew him from out west that he is a blowhard that loves to hear himself speak.  His performance at the meeting validated the assessment.  Here are a couple of his better moments:

At approximately the 30 minute mark during a conversation about coalitions (we will discuss coalitions shortly) McAuliffe chimes in with this beauty "this will include unincorporated 501c3 organizations correct?"   WTF?????    There is no such thing as an unincorporated 501c3 organization.   Does McAuliffe know what a 501c3 is? does he know what the term unincorporated means.  How is it even possible for the two terms to be combined?  It's like saying a pregnant gelding.  Gelding . . . get it like Agata after Rozen issued his statement on regulations.

McAuliffe had preceded that beauty with his discussion of applications by commissioned sales people for exemptions from being lobbyists.   Does he understand anything about procurement lobbying?  Does he know why commissioned salespeople are exempt?  Why there is no process to apply for an exemption?  Clearly not, he just wanted to hear himself bloviate.  And he topped it by referencing the "quarterly reporting obligations"   Quarterly?   Who reports quarterly?   Lobbyists report on a bimonthly basis.  Bimonthly you know every other month.   And nobody, not the staff nor the other commissioners correct him.

Then McAuliffe asks if reportable business relationships covered under 943.14 are effected by 943.4a2 that exempts lawyers providing legal services from the definition of lobbyist but requires registration after they are retained to lobby.  Staff look at each other in utter confusion as the two sections have nothing to do with one another but no one says what the fuck are you talking about.   Clueless clowns

Lastly a lively argument breaks out about who has to be included in coalitions for expense reporting purposes but no one seems to realize that coalitions can not report expenses as they do not exist and have no legal standing   They can not have bank accounts, they can't deposit funds or expend them.  They are merely aliases for groups each spending their own funds.   Chew on this one guys and gals   If I register a coalition how can that coalition report source of funding when they can not legally receive donations and or contributions?   All you are doing with regulations allowing coalitions to register is promoting a mechanism to hide lobbying expenditures.   And before you bring up the old lobby commission opinion allowing coalitions to register I wrote that opinion so I actually understand it.  And I know it was written before source of funding disclosure was required.   I would never have written that same opinion today.  I'd follow New York City's lead and only allow actual legal entities to register as lobbyists or be reported as clients.   But thanks for creating even more ways for my clients to follow your rules and shelter disclosure    DOPES