Lobbying Act

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					     Office of the
     Commissioner of
     Lobbying of Canada

  The Lobbying Act
         and
 Public Office Holders
Revised: September 2008
              Why Do Lobbying Laws Exist?

       To address the concern that some have more
        access than others to government decision-
        makers, and consequently, more ability to
        influence decisions.

       To contribute to confidence in the integrity of
        government decision-making.




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             Federal Legislation in Canada

       From 1965 to 1985, several initiatives
        relating to public service ethics were
        introduced in Parliament through Private
        Members’ Bills.

       In 1985, these initiatives resulted in Bill C-82,
        the first Lobbyists Registration Act which
        came into force in 1989.

       In 1996 an updated LRA came into force,
        including a Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct.

       Most recent amendments came into force
        June 20, 2005.

       The Federal Accountability Act, which received
        Royal Assent in December 2006, included
        major amendments to the LRA.

       On July 2, 2008, the Lobbying Act came into
        force.
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                   Lobbying Act Preamble

       Free and open access to government is an
        important matter of public interest.

       Lobbying public office holders is a legitimate
        activity.

       It is desirable that public office holders and the
        public be able to know who is engaged in lobbying
        activities.

       The system for the registration of paid lobbyists
        should not impede free and open access to
        government.




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                        What is Lobbying?

        Lobbying is communicating with a public
        office holder, for payment in respect of:

       The development of any legislative proposal,

       Introduction, defeat or amendment of any Bill
        or resolution,

       Making or amendment of any regulation,

       Development or amendment of any policy or
        program,

       Awarding of any grant, contribution or other
        financial benefit.

       In addition, for consultant lobbyists only:
               Awarding of any contract,
               Arranging a meeting between a public office
                holder and any other person.
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              Public Office Holders (POH)

        Means any officer or employee of Her Majesty
        in right of Canada and includes:

       A member of the Senate or the House of Commons
        and any person on the staff of such a member,

       A person who is appointed to any office or body or
        with the approval of the Governor in Council or a
        minister of the Crown, other than a judge receiving
        a salary under the Judges Act or the lieutenant
        governor of a province,

       An officer, director or employee of any federal
        board, commission or other tribunal as defined in
        the Federal Courts Act,

       A member of the Canadian Armed Forces, and

       A member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.


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                      Types of Lobbyist

    Consultant Lobbyist

       A person who is hired to communicate on behalf of
        a client. This individual may be a professional
        lobbyist but could also be any individual who, in
        the course of his or her work for a client,
        communicates with or arranges meetings with a
        public office holder.

    In-House Lobbyist (Corporations)

       A person who works for compensation in an entity
        that operates for profit.

    In-House Lobbyist (Organizations)

       A person who works for compensation in a non-
        profit entity.



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          Registration Process at a Glance

    Registry Information

       For consultant lobbyists, details of the lobbyist, the
        client, departments to be lobbied, subject matter(s),
        lobbying methods and other specified information.

       For in-house lobbyists, details about certain individuals
        who communicate with public office holders are listed in
        the registration, as well as other information relating to
        the corporation or organization.

    Registration Timeframes

       For consultant lobbyists, registration must be filed within
        ten days of undertaking to carry out a lobbying activity.

       For in-house lobbyists, registration must be filed by the
        senior officer responsible not later than two months after
        the day on which the requirement to file a return first
        arises.



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            What’s New in the LA for POHs?

       Commissioner of Lobbying

       Concept of designated public office holder (DPOH)

       Mandatory on-line registration

       Monthly disclosure of lobbying activities

       Prohibition of contingency fees

       Post-employment prohibition on lobbying for DPOH
        and designated members of Prime Minister’s
        transition teams

       Extension of the period during which possible
        summary conviction infractions or violations may
        be investigated and/or prosecuted

       Doubling of the monetary penalties


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                  Commissioner of Lobbying

        Independent Agent of Parliament

        Authority to enforce the Lobbying Act and the
         Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct

        Enhanced investigative powers

        The explicit duty to provide outreach and
         educational programs

        Current employees of the Registrar’s Office became
         staff of the Commissioner’s Office




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     Designated Public Office Holders (DPOH)

     The Lobbying Act defines DPOH as:
        A minister of the Crown or a minister of state and
         any person employed in his or her office who is
         appointed under subsection 128(1) of the Public
         Service Employment Act,
        Any other public office holder who, in a department
         within the meaning of paragraph (a), (a.1) or (d)
         of the definition “department” in section 2 of the
         Financial Administration Act:
            occupies the senior executive position, whether by
             the title of deputy minister, chief executive officer or
             by some other title, or
            is an associate deputy minister or an assistant deputy
             minister or occupies a position of comparable rank,
             and
            any individual who occupies a position that has been
             designated by regulation under the provisions of the
             Lobbying Act.


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     Additional Designated Public Office Holders
         Eleven additional positions or classes of positions as
         per the Designated Public Office Holder Regulations.
        Chief of the Defence Staff
        Vice Chief of the Defence Staff
        Chief of Maritime Staff
        Chief of Land Staff
        Chief of Air Staff
        Chief of Military Personnel
        Judge Advocate General
        Any positions of Senior Advisor to the Privy Council Office
         to which the office holder is appointed by the Governor in
         Council
        Deputy Minister (Intergovernmental Affairs) Privy Council
         Office
        Comptroller General of Canada
        Any position to which the office holder is appointed
         pursuant to paragraph 127.1(1)(a) or (b) of the Public
         Employment Act



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                  Changes to Initial Returns

        In addition to indicating if the lobbyist is a former
         public office holder, the return also discloses if the
         lobbyist is a former designated public office holder,
         the offices held, the date they ceased to hold such
         public office, and if the lobbyist is exempted from
         the five-year prohibition on lobbying, the
         exemption number issued by the Commissioner of
         Lobbying.

        The new Lobbyists Registration Regulations (LRR)
         requires that the registrant discloses the name and
         a description to provide details of the subject
         matter they have identified.




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            Reporting of Government Funding

     The new LRR reporting requirements include:

        Whether the client or entity in question receives
         funding from a domestic or foreign government or
         government agency,

        The end-date of the client or entity’s last
         completed fiscal year,

        The dollar amount of funding received in the client
         or entity’s last completed fiscal year,

        The name of the entity that is providing the
         funding,

        Whether funding is expected in the client or
         entity’s current financial year.




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             Monthly Disclosures by Lobbyists

         Required no later than 15 days after the end
         of every month if:

        Communication with a DPOH took place during the
         month being reported upon,

        Information contained in an active return is no
         longer correct or additional information that the
         lobbyist has become aware of should be included in
         an active return,

        The lobbying activities have terminated or no
         longer require registration,

        Five months have elapsed since the end of the last
         month in which a return was filed.




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     Monthly Disclosures by Lobbyists (Continued)

          The monthly returns regarding
          communications with a DPOH includes :

         Name and position title/rank,

         Government institution of the DPOH,

         Date of the communication,

         Subject matter of the communication,

          The Commissioner may verify with
          DPOH the content of the monthly
          return.




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                Communications with a DPOH

         A communication must be disclosed in a monthly
         report if:

        It is both oral and arranged,

        It is requested by the lobbyist,

        There is a time interval between the request and
         the communication,

        The arranged communication is:
             A phone conversation,
             A meeting,
             Any other oral communications.


        It is initiated by a DPOH when the subject matter
         refers to the awarding of grants, contributions or
         other financial benefits and the awarding of any
         contract.
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     DPOH Confirmation of Monthly Return Content

           The Lobbying Act provides the Commissioner with
           the power to require DPOHs to confirm information
           that has been submitted by lobbyists in monthly
           returns and if necessary, to correct or complete it.
           Some important aspects of this provision include
           the following:

          The provision applies to both current and former DPOH,

          The Lobbying Act is not specific about the number of
           returns that the Commissioner may choose to have
           confirmed, nor on the frequency of confirmations,

          DPOH have 30 days to respond to a request for
           confirmation from the Commissioner,

          The Commissioner may report to Parliament on the failure
           of a present or former DPOH to respond to a request for
           confirmation or on the provision of an unsatisfactory
           request.



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                        Contingency Fees

        The Financial Administration Act has been amended
         to allow the Governor in Council to fix terms in
         contracts that prohibit payments of contingency
         fees relating to any contractual arrangements with
         the federal government.

        The Lobbying Act prohibits consultant lobbyists
         from charging and accepting contingency fees and
         prohibits clients from paying contingency fees.

        Rather than indicating whether the payment is in
         part or in whole a contingency fee, the lobbyist is
         now required to confirm that no contingency fee
         was accepted.




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      Five-Year Prohibition on Lobbying

     The Lobbying Act prohibits, for a period
     of five years, former DPOHs and
     designated former members of Prime
     Minister’s transition teams from:
        Acting as a consultant lobbyist for the
         prescribed period,

        Carrying out lobbying activities on behalf of an
         organization for the prescribed period,

        Being employed as an in-house lobbyist
         (Corporation) for the prescribed period if
         lobbying constitute a significant part of the
         individual’s duties (20% rule).




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     Exemptions to the Five-Year Prohibition on Lobbying

            It does not apply to any DPOH who occupied
             their position only because of participation in an
             employment exchange program such as
             Interchange Canada.

            The Commissioner may grant exemptions to the
             five-year prohibition in certain situations
             described in the Lobbying Act.




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         Effective Dates for Five-Year Prohibition

        For transition team members, the prohibition
         has been effective for individuals who ceased to
         carry out their functions after January 24, 2006.

        For all DPOHs, except assistant deputy ministers
         and individuals who are of comparable rank, the
         prohibition has been effective for those who
         ceased such duties on or after July 2, 2008.

        For assistant deputy ministers and individuals of
         comparable rank, the prohibition will be
         effective starting January 2, 2009, for those
         who cease such duties after the six-month
         period following July 2, 2008.




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               Penalties (Breaches of the Act)

        Up to $50,000 and/or six months in jail on
         summary conviction

        Up to $200,000 and/or two years in jail on
         indictment

        Proceedings by way of summary conviction:
            may be instituted at any time within but not later
             than five years after the day on which the
             Commissioner became aware of the subject matter of
             the proceedings, and
            not later than ten years after the day on which the
             subject-matter of the proceedings arose.




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                  Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct

     Principles

        Integrity and Honesty

        Openness

        Professionalism

     Rules

        Transparency

        Confidentiality

        Conflict of Interest




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             Sanctions (Breaches of the Code)

        No fines or jail sentences.

        The Commissioner must table investigation
         reports before both Houses of Parliament.

        There is no limitation period for investigating
         breaches of the Code.




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         The New Lobbyists Registration System

        New registration module

        Improved search system

        Registrant and representatives dashboards

        Historical links

        Built-in annotation system

        Communication log module

        New system architecture

        Online tutorial

         For further information, consult the
         Lobbying Act Implementation Notice #8
         at the OCL website



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                           OCL Web Site

        Registration Process

        Interpretation Bulletins

        Public Registry of Lobbyists

        Acts, Regulations & Other Documents

        Lobbying Act Implementation Notices

        The Lobbying Act – A summary of New
         Requirements Brochure

        Archives

        Media Room

        PowerPoint Presentations




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            For More Information …


     Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying
                  255 Albert Street
                     10th Floor
             Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R5
                    613-957-2760
                www.ocl-cal.gc.ca




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