December 22, 2012

Ga. senators say they’ll agree to lobbyist cap

— ATLANTA (AP) — State Senate leaders say they are willing to accept a $100 cap on gifts that lobbyists can give to lawmakers.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the limit could be adopted by Senate rules, meaning it would apply only to senators, but not to House members.

Georgia currently has no limit on what lobbyists can spend entertaining lawmakers or showering them with gifts. Lobbyists are required only to publicly report their spending on senators and representatives.

Sen. David Shafer is a Duluth Republican who will become the Senate president pro tem when lawmakers convene Jan. 14. Shafer said it is no longer acceptable to have no cap.

Still, the newspaper reported that the Senate policy could have exceptions, including travel expenses that are “reasonable” and related to official duties.