By law, corporations and organizations that lobby the federal government must disclose certain charitable contributions to nonprofits, including ones such as the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation that are intimately tied to lawmakers. They also must disclose spending to “honor” lawmakers and high-level executive branch officials if the spending meets certain criteria.
But a Center for Public Integrity analysis found more than 20 companies and trade associations that have failed to disclose payments made to nonprofit groups aligned with government officials or aimed at honoring lawmakers they may want to influence. In every instance, other companies disclosed payments linked to the same events, though varying circumstances and exceptions to federal rules allow some omissions.
Nevertheless, so far, two companies and trade associations acknowledged not properly disclosing their payments and are amending their disclosures in response to inquiries from the Center for Public Integrity.