Lobbying compensation: Smith Bryan & Myers clears $1.2M in third quarter

The firm is on pace to meet or beat its 2019 total.

The lobbying team at Smith Bryan & Myers once again topped seven figures in quarterly pay.

New compensation reports show SBM collected a whopping $725,000 in fees lobbying the Legislature and tacked on another $485,000 lobbying the Governor and Cabinet for total receipts of $1.2 million for the quarter ending Sept. 30.

Lobbyists and lobbying firms report the pay they receive from each client in ranges, each covering $10,000 increments. Florida Politics uses the middle number of those ranges to estimate pay.

Firms also give a range for their overall earnings. SBM’s reports show it earned between $500,000 and $1 million in legislative pay and between $250,000 and $500,000 in executive branch pay.

Named partner Matt Bryan and the team of David Daniel, Thomas Griffin, Jeff Hartley, Lisa Hurley, Jim Naff and Teye Reeves represented 85 clients during the 92-day stretch, and a half-dozen of those clients sent SBM $25,000 in retainers for legislative lobbying work.

Top contracts on that side of the ledger include the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar, the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association, the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners, Intuition, Johnson & Johnson Services and Southern Fidelity Insurance Company.

More than two-dozen clients were one step down in the $15,000 pay range, while 40 showed up in the $5,000 cohort. Notable names on the lengthy client sheet include the software services behemoth Microsoft, grocery giant Publix, multinational alcohol company Diageo, utility juggernaut Duke Energy and the top-tier University of Florida.

SBM’s executive compensation report featured the same clients, though most were marked down in a lower pay grade.

A dozen $15,000 principals served as backbone to SBM’s executive compensation report, including The College Board, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund, the Florida Hospital Association, Foundation for Florida’s Future and NTT Data.

The balance contributed $5,000 apiece to the firm’s quarterly rake.

Alongside the major corporations and statewide associations were several county and municipal government interests — Alachua, Collier, Columbia and Hillsborough paid $5,000 for lobbying help on each side of the capitol complex; the cities of Naples, Palatka, Pembroke Pines did likewise.

SBM’s performance kept pace with its reports from the first two quarters of 2020, both of which saw it earn about $1.2 million. With one quarter remaining, the firm appears to be a lock to meet — or even surpass — the $4.6 million it earned for all of 2019.

Florida lobbyists and lobbying firms faced a Nov. 14 deadline to file compensation reports for the period covering July 1 through Sept. 30. Compensation reports for the fourth quarter of 2020 are due to the state in mid-February.

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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