2018 Guide to Lobbyist Gifting Rules

April 3, 2018

Edited By Beatrice Paez and Tessie Sanci

The Rules of Giving and Receiving for Federal Lobbyists, Bureaucrats and Political Staff

By The Hill Times

The 2018 Guide to Lobbyist Gifting Rules is the essential resource for your work on federal issues. Whether you are an association professional, government-relations executive, politician, bureaucrat or political staffer, this guide will ensure you stay abreast of the latest rulings and interpretations of gifting rules.


Table of Contents / More Info

Table of Contents

Lobbyist gifting: An overview 1

Guide to Gifting Rules
Keeping conflict of interest rules in mind 2
Three things lobbyists should keep in mind when socializing with public office holders 4
A summary of gifting rules in the Conflict of Interest Act 5
A summary of gifting rules in the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons 6
A summary of gifting rules in the Lobbying Act 7
A summary of gifting rules in the Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct 8

Guidance on gifts from the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner and Lobbying Commissioner
Summary of the Trudeau Report 10
Updated guidance from the Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying 12
Commissioner’s guidance for lobbyists regarding the application of Rule 10 of the Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct — Gifts 13
Conflict of interest commissioner’s guidance on invitations and receptions 15
Gifts (including invitations, fundraisers and business lunches) 18
Conflict of interest commissioner’s advisory opinion on public disclosure of gifts received in connection with travel 26
Acceptability of gifts offered in conjunction with lobby days 27
History of Bill S-207 — An act to amend the Conflict of Interest Act (gifts) 29
What happens to gifts forfeited by the prime minister? 31
Past recommendations on the Lobbying Act and the Conflict of Interest Act 33
Rules on travel for parliamentary officials 36
House of Commons ethics committee’s past meetings 38

Resource guide
List of useful web links to other government department rules and codes 42

How ex-lobbyists handle stakeholder engagement 43
Dion appeals to ethics committee for broader powers, de minimis for gifts 45
Ask the Lobby Monitor: Can lobby groups hand out campaign materials at receptions? 47
Ethics czar in talks with lobbying commissioner to clarify advice on gifts 48
New lobby watchdog in ‘learning mode,’ waiting to hear from lobbyists before sounding off on reforms 50
New ethics czar Dion says he ‘has no IOUs,’ not looking for another promotion, this is it 56
Trudeau’s holiday retreat renews attention on how conflict-of-interest rules define ‘friend’ 59
Committee to explore removing ‘friend’ exception from ethics rules 62
Trudeau won’t appear before ethics committee to testify on Bahamas trip 64
Lobbying commissioner’s office to move forward with Aga Khan probe: Democracy Watch 66
Trudeau broke ethics rules in accepting holiday trip to Aga Khan’s retreat, says watchdog 68
New lobbying watchdog could help bridge gap between her office and ethics commissioner’s, lobbyists say 70
Penalties could be in cards if nominee for lobbying watchdog confirmed 73
Trudeau’s nominee for lobby watchdog sought other post, committee hears 75
Trudeau faces renewed criticism over Aga Khan trip 77
Ask the Lobby Monitor: The politics, optics of gift-giving 78
Ask the Lobby Monitor: Cocktail break shifts conversation to shop talk 82
Dawson tables final annual report, says requests to understand act increased 84
Democracy Watch files complaint with Ethics Commish over Aga Khan ‘gifts’ 88
Vacation prompts comparison to sponsored travel 89
Ethics commish says Bennett contravened Conflict of Interest Act 92
‘I think it’s a legitimate question for them to pose,’ says CIJA’s Fogel of watchdog call for ruling on lobbyist-paid travel, noting confidence in the group’s program 94
Careful what you share at lobby day events and parliamentary receptions, warns lobby czar in guidance update 99
Confusion on gifting rules, ‘conflicting advice’ from watchdogs, getting ‘ridiculous,’ MPs and lobbyists say 101
Those who engage in certain political activities can’t lobby candidates they helped elect for “maximum of five years” 105
Ethics proponents see grounds for investigation into whether Hyder breached Lobbyists’ Code 107
New Lobbyists’ Code of Conduct strongly worded, more prohibitive with no mention of “friends” 111