What is Grass Roots Lobbying?
A grass roots lobbying campaign is a program addressed to the public in which a substantial portion thereof is intended primarily to influence legislation.
Grass roots lobbying efforts are directed to the public rather than to legislators or other governmental policymakers. Only campaigns designed to influence legislation by the West Virginia Legislature are covered. Efforts to influence local legislation are not covered.
Often the campaign will rely heavily, if not exclusively, on newspaper, radio, TV, or billboard advertising. The creation and distribution of handbills, or the purchase of a single newspaper ad could, depending upon the cost, constitute a grass roots lobbying campaign.
Who must register
Any person or organization spending more than $200 in one month or more than $500 in a three-month period presenting a grass roots lobbying program must register. A separate registration is necessary for each new campaign.
When to register
Within 30 days of making any expenditures.
Where and how to register
All sponsors must register with the WV Ethics Commission. You may download the forms from this website or call the Commission for the forms. Grass roots lobbyist registration and legislative lobbyist registration are independent of one another. Each requires separate reporting and registration forms. There are no fees associated with Grass Roots Lobbying.
Forms GR1 and GR2 for registration and reporting of Grass Roots campaigns are available by mail or in PDF format on this website.
The sponsor of a grass roots lobbying campaign is required to file reports with the WV Ethics Commission on January 15, May 15, and September 15 of each year. Forms for filing these required reports are available on the website. Use form GR1 or GR2.
Termination of campaign
A final report must be filed with the Ethics Commission when the campaign has ended. This is done on the GR2 form.
Please direct any questions or requests for forms to:
WV Ethics Commission
210 Brooks Street, Suite 300
Charleston WV 25301
Phone: (304) 558-0664
WV toll free: 1-866-558-0664
Fax (304) 558-2169