Delaware.gov logo

Public Integrity Commission

Administering and implementing Delaware's code of conduct for the executive branch.




Lobbyist Frequently Asked Questions


 

  What is a lobbyist?

“Lobbyist” means any individual who acts to promote, advocate, influence or oppose any matter pending before the General Assembly by direct communication with the General Assembly or any matter pending before a state agency by direct communication with that state agency, and who in connection therewith either:
  1. Has received or is to receive compensation in whole or in part from any person; or

  2. Is authorized to act as a representative of any person who has as a substantial purpose the influencing of legislative or administrative action; or

  3. Expends any funds during the calendar year for the type of expenditures listed in § 5835(b) of this title.

 

  Are there exceptions to the definition of a lobbyist?

Yes.


  1. Persons performing professional services in drafting bills or regulations or in advising and rendering opinions to clients about the effect of proposed, pending or enacted legislation or regulations who do not otherwise act as lobbyists;

  2. Persons appearing pursuant to their official duties as employees or elected officials of the State, or any political subdivision thereof, or of the United States;

  3. Persons who, in relation to the duties or interests of their employment or at the request or suggestion of their employer, communicate with the General Assembly or a state agency concerning any legislation, regulation or other matter before the General Assembly or such state agency, if such communication is an isolated, exceptional or infrequent activity in relation to the usual duties of their employment;

  4. Persons communicating with the General Assembly or a state agency if such communication is undertaken by them as a personal expression and not as an agent of their employers;

  5. Persons testifying at public hearings conducted by the General Assembly or a state agency who do not otherwise act as lobbyists;

  6. Persons appearing on behalf of any religious organization with respect to subjects of legislation or regulation that directly relate to the religious beliefs and practices of that organization who do not otherwise act as lobbyists;

  7. Attorneys representing clients in administrative adjudications representing clients before the Tax Appeals Board, or in other administrative procedures where ex parte communications with the state agency with authority over the matter are prohibited;

  8. Attorneys representing clients with regard to criminal or civil law enforcement proceedings, or in any judicial proceedings.

 

  I’m not going to be paid for my lobbying activity” or “I am lobbying for a non-profit organization, do I still have to register?

Yes, even though you will not be paid, you are representing the interests of another person or persons and you must register as a lobbyist.

 

  Can our group designate one person to be the lobbyist?

Yes.  The other members of the group may not lobby if one person is the designated lobbyist.

 

  Can all members of an organization lobby as long as one person is registered as a lobbyist?

No.  Each person engaged in lobbying activity is required to register.

 

  Do I have to pay a fee in order to register as a lobbyist in Delaware?

No, registration is free.

 

  I am a new lobbyist. How do I register?

Go to https://egov.delaware.gov/lobs/ and select ‘Lobbyist.’  You will need to have a delaware.gov username and password.  If you do not have one, simply follow the instructions for the New User Registration.  Once you have a username and password, you may log into the Lobbyist area and complete the registration.  For more detailed instructions, see attached.

 

  What is PIRS?

PIRS is an acronym for the Public Integrity Reporting System.  It is a database that collects and stores information about lobbyists and Public Officers.

 

  What if I forgot my delaware.gov password or Username?

We do not have access to your password.  You can re-set your delaware.gov password if you cannot remember it.  There is a ‘Forgot My Password’ link just to the right of the login box.  Once you click that link a re-set email will be sent to the email address listed in your profile

 

  Must I report an employer to complete the lobbyist registration process?

Yes, you must have at least one valid employer to complete the registration process.  If you are a citizen advocating on your own behalf, you are not required to register.

 

  Do I need to enter a valid end date for the Employer Authorization form?  How long is the Employer Authorization Form valid?

No, you may select the checkbox marked ‘indefinite’ instead of selecting an end date.  If you enter an end date, but later wish to extend or change the selection to ‘indefinite,’ you may do so.  The form is valid until you ‘terminate’ your employer.

 

  What is the lobbyist expenditure reporting schedule?

Quarter Months First Day of Filing Final Due Date
1st Qtr Jan., Feb., Mar April 1st April 20th
2nd Qtr Apr., May, Jun. July 1st July 20th
3rd Qtr Jul., Aug., Sept. Oct. 1st Oct. 20th
4th Qtr Oct., Nov., Dec. Jan. 1st (following year) Jan. 20th (following year)

 

  How do I view expense reports I have previously submitted?

Log in to PIRS, under the ‘Reports’ menu you can select ‘Submitted Reports’.  Here you will be able to view and edit any expense report you have previously submitted.

 

  What happens if I don’t file my expense report on time?

If you have not filed your expense report by the 21st of the month following the calendar quarter, your account will lock and late fees will begin to accrue.  The late fee for the first day of delinquency is $25 and increases by $10 per day for each subsequent day to a maximum of $100.  In order to log in to your account, you will need to pay the late fee with a credit card. PIRS accepts VISA and MasterCard.  The Commission does make exceptions for exigent circumstances such as hospitalization, etc.  If you want to request a waiver of the late fee you must call the office BEFORE you enter your credit card information.  The best way to avoid late fees is to file your report on time.

 

  Do I report campaign contributions as expenses?

No. To get information about how to report campaign contributions, contact the Department of Elections at 739-4277.

 

  Are expense reports the only reports I have to file?

No, you are also required to report your lobbying activity.

 

  Why do I have to report my lobbying activity?

Pursuant to 29 Del. C. § 5836 all lobbyists must report all lobbying activity on legislation and administrative regulations within 5 days of the lobbying contact or within 5 days after the legislation has been introduced in the General Assembly or within 5 days after the administrative regulation has been adopted.  You do not have to report whether you lobbied for or against legislation or administrative regulation.

 

  How/Where do I report my lobbying activity? How/Where do I enter the bill number or administrative regulation number that I am lobbying?

Once you have logged in to PIRS, go to the ‘Manage’ section click the link to ‘My Lobbying Activity’.  Next, choose the employer for which you are lobbying and click ‘Manage Activity’. From there, follow the instructions on the page to select the correct legislative or administrative action.

 

  I can’t find the bill number that I am lobbying in the list that is provided. What do I do?

The list is populated by data stored in the State of Delaware Legislative Information System and is updated every 15 minutes. If you cannot find your bill, it could be a timing issue and we suggest you check back in a few minutes.  If you continue to be unable to find it, contact us at 739-2399.

 

  I entered a bill number and it was incorrect. Can I edit/delete it?

Yes, just click the link labeled ‘Delete’ and answer ‘Ok’ when prompted to confirm that you want to delete the activity.

 

  When I log in, the system tells me that I’m inactive. What do I do?

There are several reasons a lobbyist may become inactive. If you do not know why your profile is listed as inactive, contact PIC at 739-2399.

 

  How do I change/update my contact information or email address?

Log into PIRS and select ‘Edit My Profile’. You can then edit/change any information in your profile. Please remember this information must be updated on a regular basis. It is your responsibility to provide accurate information so that we may contact you if necessary.

 

  I no longer wish to be a lobbyist. How do I make my account inactive?

If you have no expenses to report, go into ‘Manage My Employers’ and terminate all of your employers. This will automatically make your account inactive. If you have expenses to report, you may not terminate your employers until after the quarterly expense report is due. See filing schedule.

 

  I no longer want to be a lobbyist. Can I just stop logging in to my profile?

No! Failure to terminate your employers will keep your status as ‘active’. If you are listed as ‘active’ you are required to file all expense reports as they become due. If you do not file your report, your account will accrue late fees.

 

  I removed all of my employers and now I am inactive. What do I do if I wish to lobby again in the future?

Your profile remains in the system for four years. Do not create a new profile. If you wish to actively lobby again, you will need to log in (using the same delaware.gov username and password) and add an employer. At that point, you will become active (if all previous reports have been filed).

 


Related Topics:  , ,


+