State lawmakers get ethics lesson

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Tennessee lawmakers were being reminded Thursday of what they can and can't do under the state's ethics laws.

A joint training session was held for House and Senate members to educate them about the laws passed in the wake of the 2005 Tennessee Waltz bribery sting that led to federal charges against five current or former state lawmakers. The mandatory session is held annually.

Lawmakers were given binders outlining the new regulations.

They include prohibitions against receiving compensation for consulting and "accepting anything of value" from a lobbyist or employer of a lobbyist.

One regulation that changed this year is the amount a lobbyist can spend as long as it's in compliance with the law. The amount increased from $50 to $55.

Dick Williams of the advocacy group Common Cause says the annual session for lawmakers is important because "it's good to be periodically reminded" about the rules.


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