Ethics: Advisory Opinion No. 1995-19

Advisory Opinion No. 1995-19
Advisory Opinion No. 1995-19

A Public Official Acting Within The Scope Of His
Authority Is Not A Lobbyist Within The Meaning Of
Conn. Gen. Stat. Sec. 1-91(1)

The petitioner, a Superior Court judge, has asked whether he is required to register as a lobbyist prior to making a report and recommendations to the General Assembly pursuant to Conn. Gen. Stat. 47a-73.  Section 47a-73 provides that “[t]he judges hearing housing matters and the citizens advisory council shall each make a report with respect to the operation of the special docket for housing matters and their respective recommendations to the general assembly at the opening of its regular sessions in the odd-numbered years.  Such reports may also include recommendations for legislation with respect to housing matters.”

For purposes of the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists, Chapter 10, Part II, Connecticut General Statutes, the term “lobbyist” is generally defined to include a person who communicates with any official or his staff in the legislative branch of government for the purpose of influencing any legislative action.  See Conn. Gen. Stat. 1-91(k) and (1).  Exempted from the definition of such term, however, is “[a] public official [or] employee of a branch of state government or a subdivision thereof,…who is acting within the scope of his authority or employment.  See Conn. Gen. Stat. 1-91(1)(1).  A Superior Court judge reporting to the General Assembly pursuant to Conn. Gen. Stat. 47a-73 is therefore not a lobbyist within the meaning of the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists, and is not required to register as a lobbyist with the State Ethics Commission in connection with preparing or delivering such report.

By order of the Commission,

David T. Nassef
Chairperson



Content Last Modified on 9/7/2005 8:01:11 AM