The Buzz: In year of costly battles, lobbying firms prospered

lrosenhall@sacbee.comFebruary 4, 2014 

  • By the numbers

    California’s 35.9 million residents over the age of 3 are less likely to access the Internet from home or other locations than those in other states, a new Census Bureau report reveals. California’s home access rate in 2012 was 68.5 percent, under the national average of 69.1 percent, while its non-home access rate, 73.5, is below the 74.7 percent national rate. Oregon had the highest percentage of residents with Internet access at home, 87.9 percent, while Mississippi was lowest at 64.8 percent.

    – Dan Walters

Last year proved to be a good one for California firms lobbying state government – their collective income grew by nearly 3 percent over 2012.

Registered lobbying firms in the Golden State brought in $177,359,844 in 2013, according to the latest filings at the secretary of state’s office. That compares with a haul of $172,620,708 the year before.

KP Public Affairs resumed its spot at the top in 2013 after dropping to second place in 2012. KP’s oil industry client – the Western States Petroleum Association – spent $4,670,010 on lobbying last year, more than any other interest group registered to lobby California state government. The group worked hard to influence Senate Bill 4 last year, which set new regulations for extracting oil through hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking. The oil group was followed by the California State Council of Service Employees.

Sacramento lobbying firms also benefited last year from expensive fights over changing workers’ compensation benefits for professional athletes; a push by the North Fork Rancheria to open a casino in Madera; and a proposal to regulate new drugs called biosimilars, among other industry wars.

– Laurel Rosenhall


BY THE NUMBERS

California’s 35.9 million residents over the age of 3 are less likely to access the Internet from home or other locations than those in other states, a new Census Bureau report reveals. California’s home access rate in 2012 was 68.5 percent, under the national average of 69.1 percent, while its non-home access rate, 73.5, is below the 74.7 percent national rate. Oregon had the highest percentage of residents with Internet access at home, 87.9 percent, while Mississippi was lowest at 64.8 percent.

– Dan Walters


WORTH REPEATING

“It falsely suggests the promise of water relief when that is simply not possible given the scarcity of water supplies.”

Gov. Jerry Brown, in a letter to ranking members of the House Natural Resources Committee complaining about a GOP drought bill.

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