Summary

 

a)    Key points to remember

  • Meeting with lobbyists is a legitimate and valid part of your role.
  • The Act should not be used as a reason or means to refuse engagement with a person carrying on lobbying activities.
  • It is important that lobbying activities are conducted in an open, transparent way.
  • It is important that proper records of lobbying communications are maintained.
  • The obligation to register and submit returns rests with the person lobbying, not you.
  • Not all communication is considered a lobbying activity under the Act.
  • Not all lobbying takes place in a formal setting. Casual encounters, social settings, even social media may be used to lobby you.
  • Communications between you (in your capacity as a DPO) and other DPOs or public servants are exempt.
  • Certain task forces and working groups are exempt, if they adhere to the Transparency Code.
  • DPOs’ names will appear on the Register as a result of lobbying communication. This does not imply agreement with or acceptance of the views of the person lobbying you.
  • You have the right to seek correction of any inaccurate informationrelating to you.

                                           

b)   Best Practices for Designated Public Officials

  • Be aware of the requirements of the Act, the Code of Conduct for persons carrying on lobbying activities and these guidelines for DPOs when meeting with lobbyists.
  • Determine if working groups you participate in should operate under Transparency Code
  • Self-identify as a DPO at meetings and on emails, business cards etc..
  • Maintain good record keeping habits
  • Check the Register from time to time and seek correction of any inaccurate information on the Register relating to you.
  • Guide people lobbying you to www.lobbying.ie for more information on their obligations
  • Continue to engage with lobbyists