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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gambling lobbyists lead the list of those bringing in the big bucks



This is no surprise: nearly every one of the highest earning legislative lobbying firms in the last quarter represents someone involved in the debate to bring destination resort casinos to Florida.

Thanks to Travis Pillow of the Florida Current for his breakdown of the biggest earners in Tallahassee's lobbying corps in the last quarter, which ended Sept. 30. We took a closer look at the list and here's our breakdown of the casino lobbyists and their earnings. The only firm earning at least $500,000 who didn't make it to the casino list was Johnson & Blanton. There's still time.

Those that earned more than $1 million on legislative lobbying from :

* Ron Book PA, which has 65 clients including Flagler dog track

* Southern Strategy Group, which has 70 clients including Walt Disney World, one of the most up-front opponents of the resort casino bill

* Ballard Partners , which has 93 clients including Bayfront Development LLC owned by the Maylaysian-based casino company, Genting and Palm Beach Kennel Club (which is listed as Investment Corporation of Palm Beach)

Those earning more than $500,000:

* Capital City Consulting, -- lead lobbyist for Las Vegas Sands

* Colodny, Fass Talenfield, Karlinsky & Abate -- the Florida Horsemen

* Corcoran & Johnson, -- Miami Beach's Fountainbleau, which would like to get in on the casino action

* Dutko Worldwide LLC -- the Seminole Tribe of Florida

* Floridian Partners LLC -- Las Vegas Sands

* Foley & Lardner -- lead lobbyist for Genting East Coast, Thoroughbred Breeders

* Frank N. Tsamoutales -- Ceasar's Entertainment

* GrayRobinson -- Hartman and Tyner, which owns Mardi Gras Casino in Hollywood

* The Advocacy Group at Cardenas Partners -- Wynn Resort, listed as Development Associates LLC, of Las Vegas

* The Rubin Group -- Hartman and Tyner, which owns Mardi Gras Casino in Hollywood

[Last modified: Thursday, November 17, 2011 9:52am]


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