Closer Look at Lobbyists at Nevada Legislature - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Closer Look at Lobbyists at Nevada Legislature

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A person who tries to influence lawmakers on behalf of an organization is called a lobbyist - and right now in Nevada's State Capital there are hundreds. But what exactly do they do? A behind the scenes look with our "Day in the Life of a Lobbyist."

8:30 a.m.: The work day starts early for Lobbyist Melissa Clement. On this morning - a podcast, a radio interview and phone calls - all before hitting the front steps of the Capital. 

Every two years, Clement, like all Nevada Lobbyists, dedicates her life to the legislature  for 120  days. "Lobbying in the past has been coming down and testifying on a few bills, each session it gets to be a little bit more," says Melissa.  

By more, she means all the leg work that Lobbyists do on any given day.  Their mission, essentially, is to get lawmakers to vote for the bill they're representing.  So they pound the pavement - or the hallways, as the case may be - trying to make face-to-face contact. "Because until a legislator hears that a bill is important or an idea is important they don't know. And they have thousands to deal with."

Several hundred Lobbyists populate the Nevada Legislature on any given day.  The great majority are paid representatives of his or her organization.  But a smaller group do this for no pay. Melissa volunteers her time for Nevada Right To Life, because she's fighting for a cause she's very passionate about. "The law currently protects predators and human traffickers, it doesn't protect children and it doesn't protect parents,” says Clement.

Melissa is talking about Assembly Bill 405, which would require a parent to be notified before a child can receive an abortion. The controversial bill was approved in the Assembly last week but will face significant challenges when it moves to the Senate for the next vote. Elisa Cafferata represents Nevada Advocates for Planned Parenthood  - who oppose the bill.  She says  "...you can't fix good communication in a family by passing a law and so we're urging people not to vote for this again, like we say to get a reality check on what it's going to cost the courts."

But Melissa Clement remains undeterred with her printed directory of who's who in the legislature tightly in her hand, she will work shoulder-to-shoulder with the hundreds of other lobbyists advocating for their causes. 

A full list of Nevada Lobbyists and who they work for is available at this link https://www.leg.state.nv.us/AppCF/Lobbyist/reports/ListLobbyists.cfm?Paid=1&Session=78
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