The legislative social calendar: Courtesy of the lobbyists of Arkansas | Arkansas Blog

The legislative social calendar: Courtesy of the lobbyists of Arkansas

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Here's where every member of the legislature could get free meals and beverages this week during orientation. This pattern will be repeated in the regular legislative session unless shame sets in. Typically, the chamber of commerce runs and publishes the social calendar.

Events, with hosts listed

SUNDAY NIGHT:

6:00 p.m. RECEPTION AND DINNER-Little Rock Club-Arkansas Manufactured Housing Association, J.D. Harper; Arkansas Grocers and Retail Merchants Association, Polly Martin; Arkansas Petroleum Council, Tom Parker; Arkansas Oil Marketers Association)

MONDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2014

8:00 a.m.-9:00 a.m. BREAKFAST – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (CenterPoint Energy ARKLA, Kathy Alexander and Kenny Henderson)

Noon – 1:30 p.m. LUNCH – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (Impact Management, Richard Bearden, Terry Benham, Robert Coon and Clint Reed)

5:30 p.m. RECEPTION AND DINNER – Capitol Hill Building (Mullenix and Associates, Ted and  Julie Mullenix)

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2014

7:00 a.m.-8:00 a.m. BREAKFAST – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (Associated General Contractors, RichardHedgecock and Allen Gordon)

Noon–1:30 p.m. LUNCH – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING  (Stephens Investment Holdings, LLC, Warren Stephens, Frank Thomas, Bob Smith, Don Allen, and Henry Hodges)

5:30 p.m. RECEPTION AND DINNER-Association of Arkansas Counties Building (Phillips Management & Consulting Service, Inc., Bradley Phillips)

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 10, 2014

7:00 a.m.-8:00 a.m. BREAKFAST – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (Independent Insurance Agents of Arkansas, Lynn Zeno, and Arkansas Hospital Association, Bo Ryall)

Noon–1:30 p.m. LUNCH – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (Arkansas Telephone Association)

5:30 p.m. RECEPTION AND DINNER – DOE’S EAT PLACE, 1023 West Markham Street (Noble Strategies – Ben Noble, Valerie Shively, Katherine Vasilos, Alex St. Amour, and Chad Causey)

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 11, 2014

7:00 a.m.-8:00 a.m. BREAKFAST – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING

AVA FRANKS: Bank on it. A family connection in the business for new lobbyist.
  • AVA FRANKS: Bank on it. A family connection in the business for new lobbyist.
Noon–1:30 p.m.. LUNCH – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING (Arkansas Forestry Association, Max Braswell; Arkansas Timber Producers Association, Larry Boccarossa; Arkansas Forest and Paper Council, Brent Stevenson) (Arkansas Bankers Association, Ava Franks) [Handy. The Bankers lobbyist, Ava Franks, is daughter of the state Banking Commissioner, Candace Franks, recently informed she'd be kept on by Asa Hutchinson. The younger Franks, a lawyer, went to work for bankers in September. She said the agency's law firm vetted the situation and saw no conflict in her lobbying for an organization whose industry — at least those withonly state chargers — her mother regulates.]

5:30 p.m. RECEPTION AND DINNER-CAPITOL HILL BUILDING BUILDING (The Poultry Federation, Marvin Childers)

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2014

7:00 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. BREAKFAST – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING – (Arkansas Beverage Association,Dennis Farmer; Society of Association Executives, Mary Dandurand; and Arkansas Society of Professional Lobbyists, Laura Hawkins)

Noon – 1:30 p.m. LUNCHEON – CAPITOL HILL BUILDING - (Arkansas Health Care Association, Ernest Cunningham)

Tough week. No wallet necessary. A lobbyist of my acquaintance mentions that some legislators are just back from an indoctrination convention of the American Legislative Exchange Council the Koch/corporate lobby that supplies state legislators with corporate agenda cookie cutter legislation. The new amendment clearly allows some paid travel to conventions, but it doesn't appear to allow wining and dining and such. I hope no lobbyists picked up any checks for our legislators while there. Rep. Bell, could you elucidate?

At a minimum, if these are truly "planned" events and exempt from the gift ban, they should be planned far enough in advance to give public notice. Perhaps we should encourage legislation to allow public attendance at these exempt events. What's to hide, right? Shouldn't the list of meetings of our legislators be announced by a public office, not the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce?

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