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Follow the money

The Arizona Capitol Times obtained the electronic quarterly lobbying reports for the first quarter of 2013 under the state’s public records laws, analyzed the expenditures across hundreds of transactions and interviewed many of those involved in the spending.

The result is a group of stories that provide insight into who gave and received the most money so far this year, how it was spent and why the expenditures were considered important. Although records reported earlier provide details on lobbying activities in recent years, the newly obtained reports offer as close as possible to a real-time look at money related to lobbying.

» Laguna Beach weekend tops lobbying expenditures
» Freshman Ethan Orr ranks high among most lobbied
» Special events dominated lobbying expenditures during the first quarter
» Lobbyist gift ban crusader accepts gifts from lobbyist
» A lobbying tradition: lunches on the lawn
» See a searchable database of all reported lobbying activity for the first three months of 2013

The records show that a total of $233,073 was spent on lobbying during the first quarter. About 9 percent of the money, or $21,392, discloses who benefited from the lobbying.

About 7 percent of all the lobbying dollars spent were reported as “aggregate” spending, or transactions of less than $20, which do not require disclosure of who was lobbied. About 84 percent of all the lobbying dollars fall into the “special event” category, where the entire Legislature, a chamber, a committee or a caucus are all invited. Those expenditures also do not require disclosure of recipients.

The stories in this section provide several examples of how lobbying expenditures — both large and small — play out at the Capitol.

First Quarter lobbying by the numbers

Total amount reported as being spent: $233,072.65.
Total amount reported with beneficiaries listed: $21,392.09 (9.2%).
Most spent in a single transaction: $35,731.86.
Largest single lobbying transaction: Arizona Association of Realtors Day at the Capitol.
Greatest amount of money reported for lobbying on any given day: $57,649.82.
Day of the week with the greatest amount of lobbying dollars spent: Tuesday.
Money reported spent on Phoenix Coyotes hockey games: $5,952.83.
Number of beneficiaries listed for hockey game expenditures: 0.
Money spent by the National Rifle Association: $948.32.
Money spent on behalf of the state’s main utility companies: $5,693.68.
Money spent on behalf of the state’s three public universities: $4,090.21.
Recipient of most lobbying dollars reported with a beneficiary: House Speaker Andy Tobin.
Amount reported as spent on Tobin: $2,855.24.
Lobbying dollars spent with American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC): $2,279.55.
Lobbying dollars reported spent with National Council of State Legislators (NCSL): $0.
Total amount of money reported spent on flowers: $939.05.
Amount of money reported spent on flowers by APS lobbyist Jessica Pacheco: $782.92.

The network graph below shows connections between lobbying entities and the beneficiaries of lobbying transactions made on their behalf. Hover over any of the organizations or beneficiaries to highlight connections. Increase or decrease the number of nodes shown, to see more or fewer lobbying entities and beneficiaries.

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  1. Former St Sen Jack W Harper

    APS sent flowers to my Father’s funeral. This kind gesture and reasons like it, are the bulk of their expenditures. Thank you, Jessica.

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