Philadelphia tries to register its lobbyists

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    Hour 1

    Last year, Philadelphia became the last major U.S. city to adopt a law requiring lobbyists to register with the city. Its passage was one of Mayor Michael Nutter’s campaign priorities, and government watchdogs said it would help consign Lincoln Steffens’ “corrupt but contented” description of the city to history’s dustbin. And it was supposed to take effect tomorrow. But this ordinance meant to expose corruption and political chicanery has found the devil is in the details, specifically, the now-delayed implementation of that lobbyist registry. Now, the city’s Ethics Board is scrambling to respond to lobbyists, lawyers and city activists unclear on different aspects of the rules. Joining us to explain the lobbyist law and the difficulty in implementing it are ELLEN MATTLEMAN KAPLAN, vice president and policy director of the Committee of Seventy, which lobbied for the lobbyist registration; and DORON TAUSSIG, who runs the It’s Our Money project for the Philadelphia Daily News and WHYY. We’ll also hear from JAMES BROWNING of Common Cause Pennsylvania, who also advocated for the lobbyist registration law in Philadelphia.

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    [audio: 063011_100630.mp3]

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