Cook County has launched a new online database of lobbyists and lobbying activity.
CHICAGO (AP) — Cook County has launched a new online database of lobbyists and lobbying activity. County Clerk David Orr says officials have never had so much detail about how lobbyists try to influence county government. According to Lobbyist Online, 188 lobbyists made 576 contacts with Cook County officials in the first half of 2010. About 85 companies have contracted with a lobbyist or a firm so far this year. Companies were based in Virginia, Nevada, Oklahoma and Washington, D.C. Lobbyists have reported earning more than $1.2 million in the first half of the year. Their earnings were down slightly from the same period last year. The Lobbyist Sunshine Initiative, which led to the list’s creation, was unanimously adopted by the county board in October 2009. Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.