Documents posted today on the Missouri Ethics Commission website show the big utility interests wined and dined six Missouri legislators and three spouses during the ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) Conference July 30 in Chicago.
Mary Scruggs, lobbyist for the Missouri Association of Electric Cooperatives, paid $279 for $31 meals for Rep. Cynthia Davis, R-O'Fallon, Rep. Ed Emery, R-Lamar, and Rep. Dwight Scharnhorst, R-Manchester, plus Sen. John Griesheimer, R-Washington, Rep. Joe Smith, R-St. Charles, Rep. Mike Parson, R-Bolivar, and their wives.
The same nine received $30.95 meals the same day from Doug Galloway, lobbyist for Embarq, whose other lobbyist, Charles Simino. reported spending $32.72 apiece for meals for Ms. Davis, Emery, and Scharnhorst, and $65.44 for Griesheimer, Smith, and Parson, indicating the wives also had their meals paid for.
Also buying meals for the six legislators was lobbyist John Sondag, representing AT&T, who reported spending $30.95 a meal for the six, and bought an additional $50 meal for Griesheimer the following day. Griesheimer is a member of the Senate Griesheimer is a member of the Commerce, Energy, and the Environment Committee.
Emery is the chairman of the Special Committee on Utilities, which also counts Parson and Smith among its members.
The ALEC Conference was not the only time that the utilities' interests were putting out the dollars for state legislators. Ethics Commission documents indicate John Kristan Jones, lobbyist for Sprint Nextel, shelled out $2,141.30 on one day, July 11, to pay for meals and drinks for the entire Senate Commerce, Energy and the Environment Committee, and for six representatives, including five members of Emery's Special Utilities Committee, as well as a sixth representative.
The Ethics Commission documents show Emery, Shane Schoeller, R-Willard, Trent Skaggs, D-Kansas City, and Mike Talboy, D-Kansas City, each received $142.53 meals. All except Talboy are members of the Special Utilities Committee. The other two legislators, Gina Walsh, D-St. Louis, and Billy Pat Wright, R-Dexter, each received $321.53 meals.