Missouri public officials took in $680,000 in lobbyist gifts during the 2014 legislative session, with nearly all of it going to state lawmakers. That represents a 10 percent decline from the first five months of 2013, and is about the same as in 2011 and 2012, according to Missouri Ethics Commission data.
More than $500,000 in gifts went to legislative committees or the entire General Assembly, mostly in the form of receptions and meals. By listing a committee or legislative body as the recipient of the gift, lobbyists don’t have to provide names of specific lawmakers.
A bill was proposed during the session that aimed to limit gifts that could be claimed to a committee. But — like all other attempts during the session to curb or eliminate lobbyist spending — it failed to gain traction.