An omnibus ethics reform package received a drastic rewrite from the Governor’s veto pen on August 26, putting the reform measure in potential jeopardy, according to Senator Tim Bivins.

Approved with unanimous support by lawmakers and touted by “good-government” organizations, House Bill 824 aimed to put an end to “pay-to-play” contracts, prohibiting businesses that have more than $50,000 in state contracts from contributing to declared political candidates for statewide office.

The legislation also required businesses with state contracts or pending bids to register with the State Board of Elections, which was to create a searchable public Internet database linking the businesses’ names to disclosures of all their contributions to political committees.

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