Government left on shaky ethical ground as political consultants become corporate lobbyists – the boston globe

David Guarino, who helped get Attorney General Maura Healey elected and remains an adviser, is a consultant and lobbyist whose clients include companies in health care and energy, industries that Healey’s office plays a key role in regulating.

State Treasurer Deborah Goldberg’s campaign strategist, Chris Keohan, is a registered lobbyist for a gambling company that bids on multimillion-dollar contracts from the Massachusetts Lottery, which Goldberg oversees.

Similar relationships flourish in city government: Campaign advisers to Mayor Martin J. Electricity edison Walsh represent clients who want or need things from Boston City Hall, the Globe has reported, relying on e-mails that highlight the advisers’ frequent and easy interaction with city officials.

The relationships can be harder to scrutinize at the state level, where — unlike the city — whole swaths of government are exempt from the public records law.

Whether consultants are selling their access to officials or not, “there is almost always an appearance of conflict of interest in these situations,” said Pam Wilmot, executive director of Common Cause Massachusetts. Thitima electricity sound effect And any perceived conflict is going to raise eyebrows, and doubts about government, said Jordan Libowitz, communications director for the nonprofit government watchdog Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

Keolis, in a statement, said it hired Keyser Public Strategies, which the consultant runs with his wife, Eileen O’Connor, for the firm’s “right mix of corporate communications experience” and knowledge of local media, not as an inside lane to the governor who was so rough on the company.

Keyser says his company is not a lobbying firm. Electricity jokes riddles “Our clients understand that, and virtually all of them contract with other firms for those services,” Keyser said in a statement.

Keyser Public Strategies was well established before Baker’s election, with corporate clients that included AT&T and Penn National Gaming, the owner of the Plainville slot parlor. Gas vs electric stove cost But since Baker was elected, Keyser has added, among others, Partners HealthCare, the national Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, and Lyft, which for more than a year has been focused on influencing policies for the ride-for-hire industry.

Each of those firms is keenly interested in influencing state government, employing a total of 16 registered lobbyists in Massachusetts, according to state records. Eon gas card top up Keyser’s firm stopped representing Lyft a few months ago, he said.

The only clients for which Keyser and O’Connor are registered as lobbyists are groups supporting the campaign to expand charter school access, a Baker priority that will be decided at the November ballot. Hp gas online booking hyderabad Keyser acknowledges the firm is working closely with Baker on communications strategy and political messaging on the campaign.

The governor speaks with his former campaign strategist “semiregularly,’’ according to Keyser and the Baker administration, who each used the identical term in separate e-mail responses. Was electricity invented during the industrial revolution The administration later explained that “semiregularly” means weekly, most often by phone.

The Baker administration would not directly address a question about whether the relationship poses conflicts given Keyser’s work for clients with business before the administration. Shale gas in spanish Instead, the governor’s staff said Baker has taken positions counter to the interests of Keyser clients, and offered some examples.

The Retailers Association of Massachusetts is a Keyser Public Strategies client, yet Baker angered some retailers by not seeking to end the state requirement that stores pay workers time-and-a-half on Sundays. Gas tax in texas Baker has also been criticized for not pushing offshore wind power, despite Keyser’s work for Deepwater Wind, a wind power development group.

Deepwater Wind hired Keyser after Baker’s election in late 2014, according to Keyser. J gastroenterol From 2011 to 2014, during Governor Deval Patrick’s administration, the company employed Patrick’s political consultant, Northwind Strategies, as a lobbyist, state records show.

“Keyser Public Strategies is a well-respected strategic communications firm and we hired them to assist us with messaging and media strategy in Massachusetts,” a Deepwater Wind spokeswoman said.

Another Baker confidant, Jim Conroy, followed the governor into the State House and served just over a year as a senior adviser. Z gas guatemala When Conroy left government in March to return to political and public affairs consulting, he told the Globe he would continue informally advising Baker.

Conroy has signed two corporate clients: Steward Health Care, and a firm he said he could not identify because of a nondisclosure agreement. Gas pain Conroy said he does not offer lobbying and that his “two corporate clients have separately engaged lobbyists for that purpose.

“I don’t represent clients before the governor’s office,” Conroy said in an e-mail, “so there is no conflict.” State law would bar him from lobbying the governor’s office for a year after leaving his government post.

A Steward spokesman said the firm hired Conroy for communications and community relations, not for his connection to Baker; the company said Conroy has not spoken to Baker on its behalf.

For many consultants who represent corporate clients as their primary income, some cross-pollination with political figures is hard to avoid, said Jerold Duquette, a political scientist at Central Connecticut State University. O goshi judo “They cultivate a private clientele sometimes by getting publicity having done work for a political candidate,” he said. Electricity units of measurement “It’s a profession [that] unless you’re already in the top strata, you’ve got to hustle to make a buck.”

Goldberg’s consultant Keohan did not join state government after his candidate won, but did serve as executive director of Goldberg’s transition. Gas after eating bread Nonunion Treasury employees received letters signed by Keohan, asking them to reflect on whether they wanted to continue working for the new treasurer, and how to reapply if they did, according to Treasury e-mails acquired through a Globe public records request.

In April 2015, three months after Goldberg took charge of a workforce Keohan helped assemble, Keohan became a paid lobbyist for IGT, a gambling company with eyes on state lottery contracts, the Globe reported last year.

IGT, a Massachusetts Lottery vendor, hired Keohan to advocate for the company with state officials, and advise on “all aspects of the Massachusetts Lottery and state Treasury,” according to lobbying records.

The conflict of interest law prohibits former state employees from lobbying the agencies where they worked for a year after leaving state service. Gas x strips after gastric sleeve The State Ethics Commission advises that transition team members may be considered “public employees” subject to the conflict of interest law if they perform tasks ordinarily expected of government workers, such as overseeing hiring of public employees.

Keohan, in a statement, said that during the transition, legal counsel provided ethics training and advised him that “transition members were not considered employees.”

The state lottery chose IGT in January of this year to provide new hardware and software. Gas mask drawing Details of that contract are being negotiated, according to a lottery spokesman. Electricity projects for class 12 The lottery’s internal scorecards used to review the bids say IGT offered a lower price, about $23.5 million, and scored better on technical measures than a competitor.

Lobbying records show since 2015, IGT has paid Keohan’s firm $128,000, which is nearly three times more than Keohan made working for Goldberg’s campaign.

Company spokeswoman Angela Wiczek said Keohan acts as IGT’s “eyes and ears on the ground,” and was hired for his knowledge of the state’s business environment, not for his connection to a politician.

Goldberg, through a spokeswoman, said she is friendly with Keohan and they touch base occasionally on personal matters, but Keohan “does not speak to the treasurer or her staff about his clients or their issues. Gas laws worksheet with answers Furthermore, he is not in contact with anyone at the lottery, that we know of.”

Keohan declined to address questions about his interactions with Goldberg, or whether his lobbying could present a conflict of interest. Gas pain in shoulder He responded to questions with a statement saying, “I would never do anything that may harm [Goldberg] or put in jeopardy the incredible work she and her team are doing in the treasurer’s office. Electricity production I follow every lobbying law to the letter and file all reports on time in the interest of full transparency.”

IGT seems to prize political consultants who helped elect Massachusetts state treasurers. Gas vs diesel towing Three weeks after former treasurer Steve Grossman took office in 2011, the company, known then as GTECH, hired Grossman’s campaign consulting firm, Northwind Strategies, led by strategist Doug Rubin, to its stable of lobbyists.

Grossman, who left office in January 2015, said any appearance of a conflict in government is a problem. Gas city indiana police department “The perception on the part of the citizen, the voter, taxpayer that companies are profiteering unfairly through their inside relationships undermines public trust,” he said in a Globe interview.

“The fact that Doug was representing [GTECH] was of no particular consequence to me; they got no special leg up,” Grossman said. Gas 37 weeks pregnant “I realize the perception can be otherwise, but I’ll settle for the facts.”

Rubin said his work for GTECH/IGT has never focused on meeting with public officials. D cypha electricity futures “I have always tried to go overboard to make sure anything I did wouldn’t reflect poorly,” he said.

Guarino, another politically connected consultant and lobbyist, is described on the website of his firm, Melwood Global, as “the first person working on the 2014 campaign for Attorney General by Maura Healey” and as someone who “remains the top political advisor to Healey.” Line can be blurred

E-mails obtained through a public records request show the line can be blurry between Guarino’s status as an outside political adviser and a member of Healey’s administration.

In one March 2015 e-mail Guarino sent to a White House official with the subject “follow up from MA AG Healey,” Guarino referred to her administration as “our office” and outlined elements of Healey’s agenda in which he used the word “we” 11 times.

At the same time, Guarino continued advocating for his longtime clients such as Massachusetts Association of Health Plans, which paid him $396,000 from 2010 to 2015 for public relations and lobbying, according to the association. Gasset y ortega biografia E-mails from February 2015 show Guarino helping to facilitate a meeting between Healey and the association’s president and chief executive officer, Lora M. Electricity and magnetism pdf Pellegrini.

E-mails show that Guarino asked the attorney general’s employees if they would attend one of the association’s health policy forums, and lobbying records indicate three top staffers registered for the event, including a senior health care policy adviser. Natural gas jokes A spokeswoman for the attorney general said two of the staffers did not actually attend the forum, despite registration records.

In another e-mail exchange, Guarino pushed to have Healey’s voice added to a press release from the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans about expanding insurance coverage to include methadone as a treatment for opioid addiction.

“I obviously have a conflict here so I leave it to you to decide the right course,” Guarino wrote in an e-mail Jan. Gas 02 30, 2015, to the personal e-mail addresses of Healey’s top staffers. Gas number “But I think praising an effort like this makes sense.” Disclosures suggest role