The ongoing federal investigation into former House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger, who has close ties with payday lending lobbyists who allegedly paid for some of his travel, raises questions about travel activities of lawmakers. Now a state panel that rules on ethics issues has released opinion on travel rules to lawmakers.
The Joint Legislative Ethics Committee says lawmakers and their employees cannot accept travel expenses from lobbyists unless those result from participation in a panel, seminar or speaking engagement or were incurred at a meeting of a national organization of which any state agency is a dues paying member. When it comes to sharing rides with lobbyists for personal travel, starting immediately lawmakers must reimburse the cost of their travel within a week. The federal subpoena and search warrant issued in the Rosenberger case shows he is not the only lawmaker who has traveled with lobbyists in the past. But at this point, no other lawmakers have been named in connection with the FBI investigation.