Industries & Practices

Government Relations

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    Red Cups and Red Tape, The Ethics of Tailgates

    As summer turns to fall, like most Ohioans, you start looking ahead to football season. Whether you’re a diehard OSU fan or cheer on the Bengals or Browns, no doubt you’ll be getting in some tailgating this season.

    It’s not uncommon to have people coming and going through your tailgate, but what if one is an elected official. The Joint Legislative Ethics Committee (JLEC) warns that “won’t kick you out” is not the same as “invited,” so you can’t convert your event into an “all-invited” event after the fact. Depending on the value of food and drink at your tailgate, you may have to report providing food and beverage to that state legislator.

    JLEC’s reporting rules are different for all-invited events, with meals and beverages not included towards the aggregate threshold for itemized reporting. However, you still must report the value of food and beverage provided at the all-invited event.

    It’s always a good idea to regularly consult the Ohio Lobbyist Handbook and of course we are ready to help you with all of your compliance needs.

    This is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be legal advice and does not create or imply an attorney-client relationship.

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