The WPPA Tops Government Lobbying Report Yet Again!

Wisconsin law requires every business or organization that employs a lobbyist to register with the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (GAB) and to report to the Board each bill and rule number, budget subject, and topic on which a lobbying communication is made. As reported in the most recent GAB report on the last legislative session, the following is a summary of the WPPA’s lobbying efforts relative to the efforts of other organizations that purport to lobby on behalf of rank-and-file law enforcement officers.[1] As usual, the WPPA continues to be the primary voice for Wisconsin’s law enforcement community.

Wisconsin Professional Police Association: The state’s largest law enforcement association, the WPPA represents nearly 11,000 members from more than 375 local associations. In 2009-10, the WPPA spent a total of 1,384 hours lobbying, with 188 hours of that time spent directly communicating with legislators. The WPPA has three lobbyists registered with the GAB.

Wisconsin County Police Association: The WCPA’s website states that the organization has approximately 1,600 members. In 2009-10, the WCPA spent a total of 166 hours lobbying, with just 11 hours of that time spent directly communicating with legislators. The WCPA has two lobbyists registered with the GAB.

Labor Association of Wisconsin, Inc.: LAW is the only for-profit enterprise discussed herein, and membership information for this organization is not publicly available. In 2009-10, LAW spent no time lobbying or communicating with legislators. LAW also no longer has any lobbyists registered with the GAB.

Wisconsin Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs Association: The WSDSA purportedly represents the interests of both sheriffs and deputy sheriffs in Wisconsin. Membership information is not available for this organization, though it maintains a legislative committee comprised both of WSDSA and Badger State Sheriffs members, suggesting a bias in favor of management and against the interests of the rank-and-file. In 2009-10, this organization spent 749 hours lobbying, with 137 hours spent communicating with legislators. The WSDSA has one lobbyist registered with the GAB.

Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officers’ Association: The WLEOA’s informational pamphlet, magazine, and website all state that the organization offers lobbying services, and that it has “constant contact with the legislature to propose, support or oppose various bills that concern all law enforcement officers.” Despite these claims, the WLEOA is not registered with the GAB, did not report any time spent lobbying, and did not have a lobbyist registered with the state.

Wisconsin Teamsters Joint Council 39: Teamsters Joint Council 39 represents some law enforcement officers, though their membership numbers are not publicly available. In 2009-10, this organization spent 340 hours lobbying, with 89 hours spent communicating with legislators. The Teamsters have one lobbyist registered with the GAB.

Fraternal Order of Police: The Wisconsin State Lodge of the FOP did not register with the GAB, does not employ a lobbyist, and did not report any lobbying activity.

2009-2010 Lobbying Summary*
Organization Total Lobbying # of Lobbyists
Wisconsin Professional Police Association 1,384 3
Wisconsin Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs Association 749 1
Wisconsin Teamsters Joint Council 39 340 0
Wisconsin County Police Association 166 2
Labor Association of Wisconsin, Inc.** 0 0
Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officers’ Association 0 0
Fraternal Order of Police (Wisconsin Lodge) 0 0
*Wisconsin Government Accountability Board
**A For-Profit Organization

[1] Organizations that lobby on behalf of other groups of local public employees were not included in this review due to the fact that the memberships of those other organizations are diverse, thus rendering meaningless any attempt to specifically assess their efforts.

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