UPDATE: The free legislative eats report; plus more watering down of ethics law | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

UPDATE: The free legislative eats report; plus more watering down of ethics law

Posted By on Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 8:13 AM


Here's the rundown on legislative freebies this week, not including special committee events that I hope to add later.


Lunch, 11:30 a.m., AEA building,  host, South Arkansas Regional Coalition.

Reception, 4:30-6:30 p.m., Next Level Events, paid for by the Arkansas Electric Cooperatives.


Breakfast, 7:30 a.m., Capitol Hill Building, host is Arkansas Campaign for Grade-level Reading.

Lunch, 11:30 a.m., Association of Arkansas Counties building, paid for by Arkansas County Assessors Association (read: tax dollars.)

Lunch, noon, Capitol rotunda, hosted by Arkansas Boys and Girls Club. (This appears only on the Senate agenda.)

Reception, 5:30-8:30 p.m., Capital Hotel, paid for by Arkansas Realtors Association. (Given their most-favored status, it's no wonder they choose a classy locale.)


Breakfast, 7:30 a.m., Capitol Hill Building, put on by Arkansas Nurses Association.

Lunch, 11:15 a.m., Capitol Hill Building, American Cancer Society Action Network.

Also on the free swill front, the Senate yesterday amended House Speaker Jeremy Gillam's bill to loosen state ethics rule to strip out his provision to re-open the door to foreign junkets. The bill still amounts to a new stretch. For one thing, it gives political parties (read: Republican) the power to take lobby only to throw party events of unlimited grandiosity just so long as they invite all members of THEIR political party. Clubby, yes? The measure specifically excludes political party from the definition of lobbyist, even though the parties employ people to work for legislation just as other lobbies do. Talk about a loophole for Big Swills.

Why must they keep providing loopholes for free swill? Why do they keep saying these sorts of gratuities don't affect them, when they try so hard to keep them?

The political party ruse was used to cloak the lobby swillathons known as the regal session-closing dinners for the leaders of the House and Senate. It's a time for all the chums to congratulate each other on jobs well done for the special interests, with the tab for fine food and drinks paid by the special interests.

UPDATE: Here are the committee events at which members may legally be entertained thanks to loopholes created by the legislature in the people's ethics law:

The Senate state agencies committee and the House Rules Committee will be treated at 6 p.m. Thursday at Lost Forty Brewing by the brewer, the Wholesale Beer Distributors of Arkansas, Golden Eagle of Arkansas and the Arkansas Brewers Guild. Ein prosit!

Tags: , , , ,


Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • That Medicaid 'work' rule keeps on 'working'

    The latest numbers from the Department of Human Services show  thousands more people did not meet the reporting requirement on work hours in July to meet Medicaid eligibility standards.
    • Aug 14, 2018
  • LRSD school registration problems

    Vincent Tolliver, a candidate for Little Rock, mayor, has written legislators asking the Senate Education Committee to ask Education Commissioner Johnny Key to testify about problems encountered by parents on Monday, the first day of school in the state-run Little Rock School District.
    • Aug 14, 2018
  • Tuesday's headlines and the open line

    News and comment from Medicaid to the White House hissing match. Also the open line.
    • Aug 14, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • The LR chamber does the public's business. Is it accountable? Blue Hog on the case.

    Matt Campbell, lawyer and Blue Hog Report blogger, has sent a Freedom of Information Act request to Jay Chessir, director of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Mayor Mark Stodola related to the publicity stunt yesterday  built around withdrawing from the mayor's rash pronouncement that the city would seek an Amazon HQ2 project even though the city  didn't meet the company's criteria.
    • Oct 20, 2017
  • Campus gun bill clears committee

    The so-called compromise amendment that will allow anyone 25 or older with a training certificate carry a concealed weapon on public college campuses was approved in a Senate committee this afternoon.
    • Feb 21, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation