New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) recently issued an advisory opinion that expands the definition of lobbying to include aspects of public relations.
PRWeek described PRSA's opposition to the JCOPE redefinition of public relations as "slamming the lobbying rule changes." JCOPE's reinterpretation expands the definition of lobbying to include interactions between public relations professionals and reporters.
Both PRSA 2016 Chair Mark McClennan, APR and PRSA are quoted in the article, which restates PRSA's opinion that JCOPE is going outside the Commission's mission to "restore public trust in the government" and being overly broad in interpreting these communications as lobbying.
Instead, the poorly worded action will lead to more confusion as to what lobbying is, circumvention based on the ambiguous standards articulated, and less trust in government