Salt Lake County councilman failed to disclose role as UTA lobbyist

Published: Thursday, Dec. 27 2012 10:27 p.m. MST

In 2006, Horiuchi, Zuhl and a third lobbyist formed their own firm called R&R Government Affairs, which worked on contract for R&R Partners. R&R Government Affairs' clients included UTA.

"I'm not sure he really lobbied," Zuhl said. "He had an association with R&R, but he could have contributed in many other ways than lobbying. He hasn't lobbied since he's been in public office, maybe with a few exceptions.

"He had a relationship with R&R for a number of years, going back to 2000 or 2001. He provided assistance with some of our clients. He was never an employee of R&R," Zuhl said. "We just had a relationship with him, and he just helped us with a few of our clients, including UTA at one time."

Some political observers say Horiuchi should have disclosed those relationships from the beginning.

"If a county officer is lobbying for someone, that's a source of income that ought to be disclosed in a financial statement that the officer's required to file," said David Irvine, a former state legislator who serves as an attorney for Utahns for Ethical Government.

Kirk Jowers, head of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics, said it should be clear to the public whom elected officeholders represent.

"The big question is always, 'Which hat are you wearing? Are you wearing you legislator hat? Your public official hat? Your lobbyist hat? What interest are you doing right now?'"

Contributing: John Daley, KSL


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