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Eye On Boise

Posts tagged: lobbyists

Dunham joins Risch Pisca

The Boise law and lobbying firm Risch Pisca has announced that Mark Dunham, former CEO of the Associated General Contractors of Idaho, is joining the firm as a legislative consultant. “Mr. Dunham has had a very long and distinguished career in Idaho Policy and Politics with a very heavy emphasis on tax policy, construction, real estate and education,” partner Jeremy Pisca said in the firm's announcement. Dunham is an elected trustee of the College of Western Idaho; and served for 18 years as the CEO of the Idaho Association of Realtors. He left his position with the contractors in June to focus on his recovery after he suffered a stroke in January.

Otter’s budget chief departs to head Associated General Contractors

Wayne Hammon, Idaho Gov. Butch Otter's budget chief for the past five and a half years, is resigning Sept. 28 to become executive director of the Idaho Associated General Contractors. Hammon, who heads Otter's Division of Financial Management, wrote in his resignation letter, “After serving as DFM administrator longer than any of my predecessors, it is now time for me to move on.”

The previous AGC executive director, Mark Dunham, resigned in June after suffering a stroke in January; he had held the position since 2007. The group has more than 600 members, and in 2011 Dunham described it as the state's “premier construction lobby” and “the premier voice for Idaho’s construction industry at every level of government.”

Hammon's been a lobbyist before; he served as director of government relations for the National Association of Wheat Growers from 1999 to 2001 after working as a congressional aide to U.S. Sens. Larry Craig and Orrin Hatch. Hammon also headed the USDA Farm Service Agency in Idaho for seven years before joining the Otter Administration. When he left the Wheat Growers, the group's president, Dusty Tallman, said Hammon “made our organization a potent lobbying force.” Hammon is the latest in a line of top Otter Administration officials who've left for positions lobbying state government, including two former chiefs of staff.

Hammon, 41, who holds bachelor's and master's degrees in public policy from BYU, said, “I count Butch Otter as a friend, and I'm honored that he trusted me with this job, and I'm happy to have been of service as long as I have. It really is an honor.” He said the opening at AGC was a “great opportunity” for him. “We're right at the beginning of a tremendous boom in the economy - I think the recovery is happening,” Hammon said. “So that industry's got a very bright future, and I'm excited to be part of that.” Late this afternoon, Otter issued a news release about Hammon's departure; click below to read it.

Second former top state official becomes Idaho Power lobbyist

Idaho Power Co. gained more lobbying might from inside government, as another of the governor's former chiefs of staff registered to become a paid lobbyist for the state's biggest utility, reports AP reporter John Miller. Jason Kreizenbeck, who quit as Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter's top aide in October, will lobby the Legislature and his former boss. His predecessor, former chief of staff Jeff Malmen, is also an Idaho Power lobbyist. Unlike more than half of states, Idaho has no revolving door restrictions that force legislators or government employees to undergo a waiting period before lobbying former colleagues; click below for Miller's full report.

Gov. Otter’s chief of staff leaves to take new lobbying gig

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter's chief of staff, Jason Kreizenbeck, is leaving his post at the end of this week to start a lobbying firm with prominent lobbyist and former state Sen. Skip Smyser, the Associated Press reports; Kreizenbeck will be replaced by David Hensley, currently Otter's staff legal counsel. Click below for a full report from AP reporter John Miller.

Two Idaho lobbying firms merge

Two prominent Idaho lobbying firms are merging: Sullivan & Reberger is merging with Eiguren Public Policy, and the new firm, Sullivan Reberger Eiguren, will represent the clients of both firms. Sullivan & Reberger is Pat Sullivan and Phil Reberger, while Eiguren Public Policy is Roy Eiguren. “We were just at points in our lives which made some sense for us to do it,” said lobbyist Pat Sullivan. “Phil’s looking more toward slowing down a little bit and redirecting.” Eiguren said, “For me, it adds depth and a broader scope to my practice, because I’ve been a sole practitioner for five years.”

Added Eiguren, “It’s a relative comment, but we’ll be the largest lobbying firm in the state.” In addition to the three principals, the new firm likely will bring on another lobbyist, Sullivan said. The firm’s anticipating a busy legislative session. “I’ve got tax issues, environmental law issues, retail grocery issues, bail bond issues, budget issues,” Eiguren said.

Eiguren’s current clients include Amalgamated Sugar, American Ecology Corp., Exergy Development Group, Prison Health Services Inc. and Verizon Wireless, among others. Sullivan’s include AREVA Inc., Associated General Contractors of Idaho, Eli Lilly Corp. and Moneytree Inc., among others.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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