This is a guest post by Dermod Travis, executive director of IntegrityBC.
Last month, lobbyists gathered in Vancouver for The Future of Lobbying, a one -day conference put on by B.C.'s Office of the Registrar of Lobbyists, Simon Fraser Institute's Governance Studies and Public Affairs Association of Canada (B.C. Chapter).
Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there does seem to be a future for the industry. In fact, if we're not careful, B.C. could be overrun by lobbyists.
Last year, there were 2,502 in-house and consultant lobbyists registered in the province, up from 1,451 four years ago. Whoever said the B.C. Jobs Plan wasn't working?
While others do get some attention — political staff, deputy ministers and the like — that works out to 30 lobbyists for every MLA.
In Ottawa, there are 3,008 lobbyists or nine per MP.
As one of 14 panelists at the Vancouver conference, it fell on me to provide a bit of insight on the public's perspective towards the industry and a few ideas on how it might be improved.
Somehow has to rain on the parade of rainmakers. Not a tough task, though. There's no shortage of material.
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