With just two legislative days left this session, the fight over ethics reform continues under the Gold Dome.
A small group of House and Senate members are now trying to work out a compromise over sparring versions.
One of sticking points is whether to ban or just limit gifts from lobbyists.
So far House Speaker David Ralston is holding firm to a total ban and opposes the Senate's version that calls for $100 gift caps which he says could be given multiple times in a day.
“It created loopholes in a very disingenuous way,” he tells WSB’s Sandra Parrish.
But Sen. Josh McKoon (R-Columbus), who helped write the Senate measure, says the House version has its own exclusions when it comes to events for large groups of lawmakers.
“We do not need to continue to have a policy that allows unlimited gifts of unlimited value,” he says.
The latest version from the House does limit functions for committees to two a year.
Another hang up between the two sides is whether to force anyone who lobbies on behalf of an organization for more than five days to register, but not be charged a fee.
“You could be down here lobbying for a big oil company, or the garden company, or a political group but the registration fee is going to be zero,” says Ralston.
But McKoon and other grassroots lobbyists complain that would limit free speech rights.
“This is their only voice, this is their only opportunity to be heard and I’m not going to be part of a proposed ethics solution that silences those folks,” he says.
If conference committee members work out a deal, it would have to go before both the House and Senate for a vote.