In our study on state lobbying, New York has been a chief villain. The Empire State ranked second in growth in overall number (933) and ninth in growth rate (22%). As a reminder, here are a reminder on the year by year numbers from New York:
Behind the numbers, however, is an incredible growth in the amount of money being spent on lobbying.
The 2015 number was a state record which also followed records set in 2011 ($220 million) and 2010 ($213 million). The low point since 2010 was 2012 where the spending on lobbying hit $205 million.
Now, we have been very careful throughout this study to be abundantly clear that spending money on lobbying is not in and of itself a bad thing. However, we did find it interesting that early reports tied a slight first half of the year decline in lobbying expenditures to increased corruption allegations.
“It went down because of the investigations,” said state Sen. Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn). “That’s what I think. But at the end of the day there are many different ways legally to be able to advocate for something you believe in.”
We will be fleshing out the situation in New York further in a future article.
What do you think about the lobbying growth and spending in New York? We would love to hear from you. Join the conversation at https://www.facebook.com/takebackorg/ and continue to check Take Back.org for the latest thoughts on reform.