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Spending on lobbying in California tops $309 million, the second-highest amount ever recorded in the state

Spending on lobbying in California tops $309 million, the second-highest amount ever recorded in the state

Interest groups spent $309 million on lobbying California government officials last year, with new records showing the oil industry, environmental groups, labor unions and the health industry poured the greatest amounts into legislative and regulatory battles.

It is the second time in the state’s history that more than $300 million has been spent in a year, just short of the record $314 million paid out for lobbying in 2015.

Seeing such large amounts spent by moneyed interests is a concern, public advocates say, because it reflects an effort to exert heavy influence on government officials that average citizens may not be able to match.

Lobbying expenses, which...

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