The Florida Legislature in 2014 adopted a bill to require persons who wish to lobby the state’s water management districts to register that intent. The bill became law on July 1, 2014.
The lobbying provision states that a person may not lobby a water management district until registering as a lobbyist with the water management district. Persons wishing to lobby the St. Johns River Water Management District must register before lobbying the district and renew registration each calendar year thereafter. Renewals of current registrations may be filed between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31.
When registering, the person provides a statement that he/she is authorized to lobby on behalf of the group or business (known as the principal), including providing the name and business address, names of each principal, area of interest, and any direct or indirect business association, partnership and financial relationship the principal or lobbyist may have with any water management district employee.
To register as a lobbyist, please fill out the registration form below and submit to the district Clerk via email at email@example.com or by mail at:
St. Johns River Water Management District
ATTN: Lobbyist registration
P.O. Box 1429
Palatka, FL 32177
“Lobbies” is defined as seeking, on behalf of another person, to influence a district policy or procurement decision or an attempt to obtain the goodwill of a district official or employee. (112.3261(1)(b), Florida Statutes (F.S.)
“Lobbyist” is a person who is employed and receives payment, or who contracts for economic consideration, for the purpose of lobbying, or a person who is principally employed for governmental affairs by another person or governmental entity to lobby on behalf of that other person or governmental entity. (112.3215(1)(h), F.S.)
“Lobbyist” as described in Rule 34-12.120, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.), does not include:
- An attorney, or any person, who represents a client in a judicial proceeding or in a formal administrative proceeding conducted pursuant to chapter 120 or any other formal hearing before the district or an agency or authority of this state. This includes, after the filing which initiates the proceedings, informal proceedings under sections 120.569 and 120.567, F.S., rule challenge proceedings, declaratory statement proceedings and bid protest proceedings.
- An attorney, or any person, who represents a client at a publicly noticed rulemaking hearing or workshop.
- Notwithstanding the above two provisions, an attorney or other person representing a client who lobbies an agency regarding matters which may result in an administrative proceedings or who lobbies an agency regarding rulemaking outside of publicly noticed rulemaking hearings and workshops may be a “lobbyist” if seeking to influence district policy or rulemaking.
- A person who lobbies to procure a contract whose value is less than $20,000 (112.3215(1)(h), F.S.)
“Lobbying” activities are described in Rule 34-12.160, F.A.C., as including seeking, on behalf of another person or governmental entity, to influence:
- The content of a district request for proposals or specifications for the purchase of goods or services whose value is greater than $20,000.
- The priority given by the district to the purchase of land or to a construction project.
- The district’s decision regarding a proposed rule through communications with district personnel outside of a publicly noticed agency hearing or workshop.
- The district with respect to district policies.
Activities that are not “lobbying” are described in Rule 34-12.170, F.A.C., as including:
Participation at a bid conference held by the district after bid specifications have been set and announced by the district.
The mere submission of a bid or proposal in response to a district solicitation of bids or request for proposals.
A request for information about the district’s procedures, forms, budget, budget proposal, programs, or other requirements in behalf of another.
Appearances before the district and communications with the district which are initiated by the district’s request, such as a response to a request for information, an appearance in response to a subpoena, or a responsive quotation of prices or description of materials or services available.
Advice or services communicated to the district which arise out of an existing contractual obligation with the district to render the advice or services provided.
Representation of a client before the district where the district’s decision relates to the grant or denial of a permit, license, or certification, or may result in an order imposing or recommending the imposition of disciplinary action against the client.
Representation of a client at a publicly noticed hearing or workshop conducted by the district regarding a proposed district rule.
Representation of a person before the district where the person provides only reimbursement for actual travel, lodging, and meal expenses, rather than compensation, remuneration, or a commission for the representation.
Communications with the district by an expert consultant retained by a person to gather, analyze, or disseminate information required by the district, when made in connection with the person’s application for a permit, license, or certification.
For details, see Chapter 112.3261, F.S.
Rule 17.1(i) – DISCLOSURE OF CONTRACTS FOR LOBBYISTS WHO REPRESENT PUBLIC ENTITIES
These individuals are full-time employees of the District and serve the public in a variety of ways. These include communicating and providing information about the District and its operations to members of the Florida House and Senate during the legislative process, and as such are registered lobbyists.
Dr. Ann B. Shortelle, Executive Director: $175,011.20
Nicholas S. Abrahams, Governmental Affairs Director: $88,046.80
James S. Peluso, Ombudsman and Legislative Analyst: $62,316.80