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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

House will investigate lobbyist



Dobphoto_5 Walking down College Avenue this afternoon on his way to a press conference about renewable energy, lobbyist Michael Dobson was as friendly as ever. He even thanked a reporter for writing about his dubious effort to get a vanity license plate approved last session.

"You did me a favor," he said, adding that he will no longer work on specialty plates.

But the stink has not cleared. This afternoon, House lawyer Jeremiah Hawkes wrote a letter to Speaker Marco Rubio saying a preliminary investigation found probable cause that Dobson engaged in unregistered lobbying and "fraudulent representation" before a committee.

"These violations are not de minimus," Hawkes wrote. "Mr. Dobson has been a registered lobbyist for years and is aware of the requirements to lobby. Mr. Dobson was given an opportunity to respond to this investigation, and failed to do so."

This month, the Florida Commission on Ethics fined Dobson's firm $5,000 for not filing a disclosure form last year.


[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 8:48am]


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