Local Reaction To New Lobbyist Spending Limits - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Local Reaction To New Lobbyist Spending Limits

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Montgomery's mayor is pleased with the recent ethics laws passed by state lawmakers but isn't sure what the impact will be.

"Time will tell. We're just not sure what the unintended consequences are" Strange said.

The City of Montgomery was very concerned that if lawmakers drastically cut how much lobbyists could spend on lawmakers then it could really hurt the city's restaurant industry.

Strange said "We did not want close three or four restaurants and we certainly didn't want to lose 200 to 250 employees either."

Bud Skinner, the owner of Jubilee Seafood in Cloverdale was very concerned he could potentially lose ten percent of his business if lawmakers went through with the governor's proposal to limit lobbyist spending to $25 per day.

"It wasn't going to put me out of business" Skinner said, "But I certainly didn't want eight to ten percent of our business to disappear."

Montgomery leaders lobbied lawmakers during the Special Session two weeks ago to try and limit the financial impact on the city's restaurants.

"Our restaraunteurs are happy with it. . . some of the owners who are planning on opening up downtown are still going forward with those plans" Montgomery's Mayor Strange said.

Lobbyists are now limited to spending $150 per year on any one lawmaker and $25 is the most they can spend on any one occasion. Principals, the groups that hire lobbyists, could spend $250 per year on a lawmaker with a $50 maximum on any one occasion.

Governor Bob Riley signed the bills into law last week.

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