City Commission Approves New State and Federal Lobbying Contract

City Commission Approves New State and Federal Lobbying Contract

On Wednesday, Oct. 14, the City Commissioners approved the adoption of a new lobbying contract that will combine both federal and state lobbying services, as opposed to the current model that maintains separation between the two levels of government.

The annual fiscal impact of the contract will be $50,000. Five years ago the city was paying $220,000 per year for state and federal lobbyists.

Tallahassee’s current state lobbying contract ends on Oct. 29, while the federal contract ends on Oct. 31. City staff issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) in August of this year encouraging the combining of state and federal lobbying services “to allow the City’s legislative priorities to be represented seamlessly at both levels of government,” according to the meeting agenda.

The Commission approved the award for Lobbying Services as outlined by the RFP. This will authorize either the city manager or other designated person to work out a contract with the GrayRobinson law firm, which was identified by the RFP as being the most qualified based on specific evaluation criteria, including experience, staff qualifications and diversity.

The City will negotiate for a three-year contract with the GrayRobinson firm. The fiscal impact of the proposal was quantified at $50,000 annually for three years, with the budget for the 2021 fiscal year providing “sufficient funding to support the proposed amount.” Additionally, the plan was reviewed by Resource Management and deemed to be within budget guidelines.

“The City of Tallahassee retains lobbying firms to effectively engage in the legislative process, protect and advocate for the City’s interests and stay informed on important policy initiatives,” the agenda states.

The combination of state and federal lobbying contracts will begin in November 2020.

14 Responses to "City Commission Approves New State and Federal Lobbying Contract"

  1. Are not the Mayor and Commissioners themselves “our” local and state lobbyists? Is it not part of their job to lobby the county and state on behalf of the city?

  2. F.S. 171.051 provides for municipal deannexation
    In light of the northeast’s lack of representation…
    And Killearn, Florida is born!

      1. >or everything north of I-10
        Hey, why not? The nascent city will be needin’ some room to grow!
        As a bonus, the old colonizers with all the land will get to discover that, like back during radical reconstruction, votes count more than twice as much as soil ‘n possums.

  3. In this instance the synonym for “lobbying contract” is “money laundering”. Law firm “A” enters into a lobbying agreement with local politicians for $50,000, presumably to represent the interest of the local government before the legislature and / or the congress. Law firm “A” returns a large portion of that $50,000 in the form of campaign contributions to the local politicians that retained law firm “A” and law firm “A” keeps the difference as a fee to laundry the tax payer money. Representation before the legislature and /or congress on the issues important to the local government are handled very effectively by the League of Cities or the Association of County Commissioners for a lower fee than charged by law firm “A”. That’s how money laundering through lobbying contracts works and the new contract reported on here only means that the new lobbying contract is just charging less to laundry the tax payer’s dollar.

    1. LoC “Fort Lauderdale, Fla. – September 30, 2020 – GrayRobinson, P.A. (GrayRobinson) today announced Fort Lauderdale Attorney Gary Resnick, chair of the firm’s communications, broadband & new media law practice group, has been appointed to the Florida League of Cities’ Executive Committee.”

  4. Campaign contributions Fred. Thats what they are lobbying for. Along with a few legitimate sounding things that are used to make the casual observer think the whole lobbyist operation is legit.

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