Gov't lobbying government: Local governments spent $8.3 million in 2011 to lobby legislators

All that money went to influence the people in here
The Vikings don't have to release information on how much money they spent lobbying Minnesota in 2011, but the state's local governments do. Their lobbying tab for last year comes in at $8.3 million, according to a 386-page report released Monday by the state auditor's office. That number's a 0.7 percent, or $55,000, increase in local government lobbying spending from 2010.

Since 2011 was a budget session in the Legislature, versus 2010's shorter bonding session, this increase is low, per State Auditor Rebecca Otto. "It is notable that in 2011, local government lobbying costs remained relatively flat," she said in a statement covered by Pioneer Press.

After all, as the report notes up front, local governments have to make themselves heard. "The operation and funding of local governments can be greatly affected by decisions made by the state Legislature," the report reads. "Therefore, it is understandable that those affected by these decisions would want to have representation during the legislative process."

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Dick Day, ex-state senator, tours southern Minnesota to advocate more slot machines

Dick Day wants slot machines at horse racing tracks, dagnabbit, and he wants them now.

The former state senator--who turned some heads a few months back by simultaneously announcing a) his resignation, and b) his new gig heading a pro-gambling lobbyist group, a move that almost comically embodied the cozy relationships between lobbyists and lawmakers--is taking his message to the people.

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