Lobbying compensation: Peebles Smith & Matthews reels in $550K in Q2

Peebles Smith Matthews
The firm could have earned as much as $750K.

Lobbying firm Peebles Smith & Matthews earned $550,000 in the second quarter, topping their performance for the same quarter last year.

The firm led by Bill Peebles and Ryan Matthews represented more than three dozen clients during the April through June reporting period, clearing an estimated $390,000 lobbying the Legislature and another $160,000 lobbying the Governor and Cabinet.

The firm’s earnings slightly edge out the $535,000 they earned in the second quarter of 2019.

Florida lobbyists report their pay in ranges covering $10,000 increments. Florida Politics uses the middle number of each range to estimate quarterly pay.

Peebles Smith & Matthews’ top-paying client was the Florida Municipal Broadband Alliance, which chipped in $45,000 toward their total receipts in the Legislature.

It was followed by the Florida Municipal Electric Association at $35,000, the Florida Municipal Power Agency at $25,000 and a host of clients at the $15,000 and $5,000 level.

Municipal interests dominated the ledger — the cities of Gainesville, Kissimmee, Maitland, Mount Dora, Newberry, Orlando, Tallahassee and Winter Park all retained the firm, as did Miami-Dade County and the Marion, Monroe,  and Orange County boards of county commissioners.

On the executive side, the Florida Municipal Electric Association showed up with another $15,000 in fees while the Florida Municipal Broadband Alliance sent another $5,000, putting the two associations in a tie for the firm’s most lucrative contract overall.

In addition to reporting per-client pay ranges, firms report their quarterly gross in broad ranges. The reports indicate Peebles Smith & Matthews earned at least $350,000 in Q2. The firm may have earned as much as $750,000 if all their clients redlined in their reported range.

When lobbyists and their firms sign lobbying agreements with each client, they are required to report all earnings with the state on a quarterly basis.

Firms faced an Aug. 14 deadline to file compensation reports for the period covering April 1 through June 31. Compensation reports for the third quarter of 2020 are due to the state on Nov. 14.

Drew Wilson

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.


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