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Record $112 Million Spent on Lobbying, Report Says

Times Staff Writer

Private and public interest groups spent a record $112.5 million the past two years to try to influence legislative and administrative actions in the state, the Fair Political Practices Commission reported Wednesday.

The interest groups shelled out an additional $19.5 million in campaign contributions to state politicians, primarily incumbent officeholders, the commission said.

A two-inch-thick report issued by the political watchdog agency on lobbying and campaign funds said lobbying expenditures have nearly doubled since 1979 and 1980 when the total two-year spending figure was $59 million.

PG&E; Spends Most

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Pacific Gas & Electric Co. was listed as spending the most on lobbying--$14,357,288--in 1983 and 1984.

Ninety-seven percent of that was related to Public Utility Commission hearings and about 3%, or $400,000, to legislative lobbying.

Excluding utility companies, the top 10 lobbying spenders were the Western Oil & Gas Assn., $1,879,119; California Medical Assn., $1,517,447; Chevron USA, $1,126,207; California State Employees Assn., $1,060,179; California Teachers Assn., $807,108; Assn. of California Insurance Companies, $800,882; California Building Industry Assn., $773,901; California Railroad Assn., $757,070; County of Los Angeles, $729,390, and California Council for Environmental and Economic Balance, $724,991.

By category, business was the largest spender. Corporations, banks and insurance companies accounted for more than 40% of all lobbying payments--spending $44 million. Their 1979-80 total was $21 million.

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Following businesses were utilities, then health-care providers, then local governments.

Top Money Earner

The commission said the lobbying firm of A-K Associates collected the most money from clients with a total of $2,424,249. The firm employed 11 lobbyists to serve 44 clients.

Advocation Inc. was next with $1,954,454 received during the past two years from 33 clients.

Carpenter-Zenovich & Associates was third with total receipts of $1,069,376. It is the only one of the top three headed by former public officials--former Sens. Dennis E. Carpenter (R-Newport Beach) and George Zenovich (D-Fresno), who later became an appellate court judge, then resigned to become a lobbyist.


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