Who Spent the Most Lobbying the Kentucky General Assembly In The 2014 Session?

May 30, 2014

The dome of the state capitol building in Frankfort
Credit Kevin Willis

Lobbyists spent $8.7 million to lobby Kentucky lawmakers this year—and tobacco giant Altria led the pack at $156,000, According to records released by the Legislative Ethics Commission this week.

Some have pointed to the tobacco lobby's heavy spending during the 2014 session as a major contributing factor in the defeat of a statewide smoking ban.

Here are the top 10-spending companies and business interest groups to lobby the General Assembly: 

$156,000 Altria

$128,434 Kentucky Chamber of Commerce

$97,850 Kentucky Hospital Association

$83,499 Kentucky Medical Association

$75,075 AT&T

$72,320 Kentucky Bankers Association

$68,821 Kentucky Farm Bureau Federation

$66,348 Kentucky Justice Association

$65,985 Kentucky Retail Federation

$62,631 Kentucky Association of Cooperatives

The commission noted that the amount was about $470,000 less than the record-setting $8.8 million spent during the 2012 session, a decline it attributes to the activities of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association.

The CHPA is the legislature's single biggest lobbying spender ever, setting a record of $486,053 during the 2012 session. The pharmaceutical group primarily spent on a pricey "phone banking and website advertising allowing direct citizen contact with legislators," according to the commission.

The report also details a dozen entities that were among the biggest lobbying spenders in 2014, but not in 2012:

Norton Healthcare ($68,900)

Kentuckians for the Commonwealth ($67,546)

Pew Charitable Trusts ($65,985)

Kentucky League of Cities ($65,548)

Home Builders Association of Kentucky ($60,948)

Wellpoint ($58,500)

Kentucky State Building & Construction Trades Council ($57,051)

United Parcel Service ($54,950);

Boardwalk Pipeline Partners ($54,500)

CSX ($54,001)

AK Steel ($53,658)

Kentucky Association of School Administrators ($50,350)