BOW WILLIAMS Automobile and General Insujunee t Budget Payment Plan Strong Stock Companies 1 824 LAMAR, AUSTIN GReenwood 2-0645 Let’s Abolish the Poll’ Tax! IN HOUSTON BELL INSURANCE AGENCY 2W CAROLINE STREET CA 8-4469 ALL KINDS OF INSURANCE SiNCE 1929 AMENDMENTS. COMING IN LOBBY FIGHT AUSTIN Pitched battles over the lobbyist control issue are expected the final week of the session in both wings of the pink granite Capitol. Gov. Price Daniel has agreed to sign a version of the registration bill which registers those lobbyists who “argue for or against” proposed legislation and requires them to report their expenditures for that purpose. But in both the House: and eSnate advocates of stronger lobby registration said they are ready to espouse amendments to the Governor’s amended bill. The House state affairs committee last week struck out of its draft the clause protedting the entire bill from unconstitutionality in the event one of its clauses or sections is held unconstitutional. Rep. Richard White, El Paso, has prepared an : amendment to restore the severability clause. Rep. Zeke Zbranek, Daisetta, who originally co-sponored the Governor’s bill, said “the Senate committee reported a 1 stronger bill out of committee than the House did.” He is working on amendments. “There is an impasse,” said Zbranek. “There is a strong and honest aversion to making lobbyists report completely. They say it’s just gonna embarass you and me and everybody …. I personally favor complete reporting.” Zbranek says a compromise is being suggested that if anyone who . registers as a I lobbyist spends to or on. behalf of a member of the legislature $100 or more during a whole yer it’s got to be itemized.” Zbranek defended the “direct communication” a n d reporting features as defined. “Th t e lobbyists who are asked about this say a reasonable interpretation of direct communication is that they are going to have to report everything,” he said. \( Other House members stand prepared to offer as an entire substitute to the Governor’s bill the Legislative Council 1411 or the measure the House passed last session. Rep. Babe Schwartz, Galveston, was to offer a substitute plan to require legislators and other elected or appointed state officials to report favors worth $10 or more. On the Senate side, Sen. Henry Gonzalez, San Antonio, promised a stiff fight for amendments to the Governor’s bill, and other senators were reported prepared to take up various amendments. Gonzalez said the Governor’s bill should require “more details of the nature, extent, and scope of lobbyists’ activities. What’s wrong with reporting?” He will also seek an amendment to establish a legislative activities disclosure board to enforce the lobby law. Senate and House state affair s committees accepted subcommittee reports and recommend bills to their respective colleagues. Sen. Crawford Martin, Hillsboro, said Daniel said he would sign the Senate committee bill. The Senate substitute, drawn by Sens. Martin, Culp Krueger of El Campo, and Grady Hatlewood of Amarillo, applies to persons as natural individuals or corporations, except that only individuals are required to register or to report their expenditures for the purposes of direct communication. Direct communication is defined as “any personal appearance before a legislative committee, or any personal contact with any member of the legislature, the Governor or Lieutenant Governor, for the purpose of arguing for or against pending or proposed legislation during a session of the legislature ….” Governor Daniel’s original bill included lobbyists who “explain” or “discuss,” as well as those who argue, about legislation, and Daniel did not limit direct communication to such efforts “during a session of the legislature.” The bill would register anyone who engages in direct communication for compensation and anyone who engages in direct communication for another person or whose expenses are paid by another person, provided he spends more than $50 for purposes of direct communication. It would exempt state or politi cal subdivision employees \(except for agents of voluntary associaadvising clients about them, journalists, churchmen protecting church doctrines, and persons appearing before legislative committees “at the invitation or request of the committee.” Registrants would give the name, occupation, and address of themselves and of the persons employing them or for whom they are to act, as well as a brief description of legislation they are working on. Reports would be filed each calendar month “succeeding a month during any part of which the legislature is in session, and on the last day of each calendar year, so long as his activity continues,” “giving the total expenditures made … during the preceding month … for the purpose of direct communication, as that term is herein defined in Section This is new in that it is. appalently limited for practical purposes to the duration of legislative sessions and it does not require the itemization of expenditures over $25, as the Governor’s bill did. It further exempts from expenditures required to be reported, “expenditures of the registrant for his personal sustenance, clerical help, lodging, and travel,” but adds, “Entertainment expense for purpose of direct communication shall be reported.” This is new wording. The Senate report also inserts wording that no report is required for any period when the registrant spends nothing for the purpose of direct communication. The Secretary of State keeps the information on file for three years \(not four, as in the Goviod of time the reports shall be destroyed by the Secretary of State.” The bill bars from the floors of the legislature anyone registered under the act and others “not authorized by law” to be there. It says that “no person shall in any manner seek to influence” legislators or the governor on ,legislation “other than by an appeal to LONE STAR Striker acceptance of recommendations by national leaders of the AFL-CIO United Steelworkers of -America has brought an uneasy truce in the bitter, violence-punctuated seven-week-old reason.” It prohibits spurious communications with the legislature. It provides for the severability of the bill’s provisidns. It would go into effect upon passage. The House committee’s bill is similar to the Senate bill as described here except in these respects: Direct communication is personal appearance or contact “for the purpose of arguing for against pending legislation or any action thereon” but is not limited in time to session of the legislature. The House bill would register anyone who, as an employee of another, undertakes direct communication, either as all or part of his duties, and anyone who, as the agent of another, or for another’s benefit, or whose expenses are paid by another, undertakes direct communication. Registrants would register with the chief clerk of the House “each and every year in which the legislature is in session, or before any such service is performed.” Reports of expenditures would be required each month “succeeding a month during any part of which the legislature is in session, so long as his activity continues,” which would limit reports of expenditures to legislative sessions. The House bill requires reporting of “the total expenditures … during a preceding month for the purpose of direct communication, as this term is defined herein \(except for bona fide expenditures of the registrant for his personal sustenance, lodging, travel, The House bill also includes a new exemption: “Expenditures of $25′ or less for any one particular item need not be reported.” The House emergency clause includes a statement the act would take effect Jan. 1, 1959. The Hearings There was a snafu over the Senate subcommittee’s r e p o r t, which had not been signed by the subcommittee when the state affairs panel met. Martin said he had not signed because he understood the draft was not satisfactory to Hazlewood. Hazlewood and Krueger then would not sign work stoppage of Lone Star Steel Co. Attorney Chris Dixie, of Houston, regional lawyer for the union, said: “I hope this means an end to aynarnitings and breaches of the peace.” Dixie said the strikers voted, by overwhelming maj ority, to return to work at the steel plant as new employees. However, he said, the action did not mean that the dispute had been settled: “N o n e of the aggravations have been settled but are left to the future.” Pickets ceased pacing before the struck plant, but 80-odd Texas Rangers and highway patrolmen, posted to the area several weeks ago after violence, including the bombing of homes, gas lines and vehicles, erupted, are still in. the area. Ranger Captain Jay Banks of Dallas, who heads the peace officer force, said: “Our job isn’t over; we still have numerous violations to investigate. Some of the people may be mad. We are keeping a close watch.” Underlining the warning note of non settlement sounded by Dixie was this situation: although there were nearly 2,000 men on strike, only about 800 jobs need to be filled. The balance of the THE TEXAS OBSERVER Page 4 November 8, 1957 it because Martin wouldn’t. Martin explained the provisions of the bill, then suddenly announced he would sign it. Hazlewood and Krueger also agreed. Martin was asked if the bill as reported was acceptable to the Governor. \(Hazlewood had shown stout, but in my humble opinion he will sign this Martin said. “He indicated he would. Whether he is pleased with it, I couldn’t say. This is not the bill the Governor wanted.” Sen. Jimmy Phillips, Angleton, remarked, “This is an orphan bill, an illegitimate baby. Nobody claims it.” He said that it has too many loopholes and that Martin had implied the Governor was not for it. Sen. Searcy Bracewell, Houston, said ‘the bill had too many exemptions. “It doesn’t make any difference whether a man who is lobbying is a public official, .a newspaperman, or a preacher, he ought to come in here and register, he said. Martin said he was “not happy” with the reporting section of the bill, which requires reporting of the gross total of a lobbyist’s expenditures of more than $50 a year, but does not require that any of them have to be itemized and exempts lobbyists’ personal and office expenses. Bracewell moved for the approval of his bill, but it was lost in the shuffle. Phillips lost, 4 to 15, his effort to table the subcommittee report. On the House side, Rep. Prates Seeligson, San Antonio, tried to substitute the plan by Rep. Schwartz. Rep. R. H. Cory of Victoria, co-sponsoring the Governor’s bill in the House, said subcommittee changes from the original version were so minor he felt the Governor would accept it. Cory argued that the Schwartz bill would “condone” gift taking and that its principle was not backed up by experience in any other state. Seeligson. observed Texas was the first community property state. The subcommitte bill prevailed 9-8. Without debate the House committee struck out the severability clause of the subcommittee bill. jobs have been filled by new workers or union members who left off striking and returned to work. Governor Considers New Session at Once AUSTIN The Observer’s report last issue that Gov. Price Daniel has remarked in private conversation that if his bills are not passed by this special session of the legislature he will call another one immediately is further confirmed this week. A political leader, formerly a high-up aide of Gov. Allan Shivers, advised the Observer at the “Freedom in Action” banquet in Dallas that Daniel had told him that if his bills are not passed this session, he would call the legislature back at once. The present session must end by Nov. 12. State Rep. John Crosthwait, Dallas, called on the Governor and argued for a second session after Christmas, next spring, if at all. Daniel argued a second special session immediately would be less expensive. ‘ COMPLETE NSW? CE SERVICE HALL’S WIGtNTON-HALL LEAGUE CITY INSURANCE AGENCY INSURANCE AGENCY INSURANCE AGENCY Dickineon, Texas Alvin, Texas League City, Texas Uneasy Truce at Lone Star
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The Texas Rangers are tasked with investigating corruption and crimes by public officials. Those officials are rarely held accountable.