Lobbyists will now have to register after speaking with members of Burlington city council

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Published January 28, 2022 at 2:53 pm

deputy mayor

In an effort to improve municipal government transparency and accountability, lobbyists who meet with members of Burlington city council will now have to register.

The City of Burlington has launched an online lobbyist registry designed to document interactions between individuals who lobby and members of Burlington City Council.

“The lobbyist registry is one of many tools the City has to ensure a culture of open, transparent and accountable government,” said Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.

“It’s important that members of the public can clearly see who is lobbying the City of Burlington’s public office holders and on what topics. The goal is not to prevent interactions and communications but to make decisions more transparent.”

The centralized, searchable registry found here helps ensure greater transparency in the local government decision-making process and meets the requirements of Burlington’s Lobbyist Registration Policy.

Under the policy, approved by city council in November, lobbyists are required to register and submit the subject matter they intend to discuss with city councillors.

Lobbyists are required to register their lobbying activity within 10 business days of their meeting with a member(s) of City Council.

“Lobbying is a legitimate activity that benefits not only lobbyists, but also public office holders and members of the public,” said Kevin Arjoon, city clerk.

“The benefits of lobbying are lost, however, when they take place behind closed doors. This new registry ensures the process is transparent and easy to access by the public.”

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