1997-1998 Lobbying Expenditures and
The Top 100 Lobbying Firms

January 1, 1997 through December 31, 1998


$292.6 million was spent to lobby* state government in California during the two-year legislative session beginning January 1, 1997 and ending December 31, 1998.

The $292.6 million spent to lobby state government during 1997-98 sets a new record for total lobbying expenditures and continues a consistent trend of ever-increasing costs.

Total lobbying expenditures for the last five legislative sessions were:











During the final quarter of the 1997-98 legislative session (October 1 through December 31, 1998) $32.7 million was spent for lobbying.

Among all lobbyist employers, Western States Petroleum Association spent the most on lobbying activities for 1997-98. The association's total 24-month lobbying expenditures were $4.6 million.

During the fourth quarter of 1998, Western States Petroleum Association also spent the most on lobbying activities--$466,094.

Among lobbying firms, Kahl/Pownall Advocates received the most payments during 1997-98--$7,190,200.

During the fourth quarter of 1998, Kahl/Pownall Advocates also received the most in payments--$884,229.

The following report summarizes total payments made by 2,295 lobbyist employers, including payments made to in-house lobbyists and to contract lobbyists. In addition to salaries and fees, the payments include overhead expenses and gifts.

* Lobbying expenditures identified in this report include expenditures for the purpose of attempting to influence state administrative actions in addition to expenditures to influence the State Legislature. The most significant expenditures involving administrative actions are payments by utilities (e.g., Pacific Telesis Group & its subsidiaries) in connection with proceedings before the Public Utilities Commission and payments by insurance companies (e.g., State Farm Insurance Companies) in connection with proceedings before the Department of Insurance.

In addition, lobbying expenditures include dues paid by certain government agencies to organizations that engage in specified lobbying activities. These dues are paid primarily by local governments to associations (e.g., California State Association of Counties; League of California Cities). Dues which must be disclosed as lobbying expenditures also are paid by some school districts and utilities. Consequently, the interest group categories identified in this report which include dues payments are government, education and utilities.

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April 1999