DuPage panel backs plan to use lobbying firms

A DuPage County Board panel is recommending approval of one-year contracts for four lobbying firms totaling $282,000.

The county board's legislative committee is supporting the use of three firms - Roger C. Marquardt & Co., NJ Kimme & Co., and All-Circo Inc. - to push the county's legislative agenda in Springfield.

Panel members also recommend keeping BGR Government Affairs LLC, which has promoted DuPage's interests at the federal level since 2009.

John Curran, chairman of the legislative committee, said DuPage government benefits from having lobbyists working on its behalf.

"This is a time of reductions in both Springfield and Washington, D.C.," Curran said. "They are looking to cut where they can. It's imperative that they not cut in areas that hamper the county's ability to deliver services that we provide to residents."

The panel's recommendations are expected to be considered by the full county board Aug. 23.

As part of its proposed contract, All-Circo would be paid $102,000 for a period starting Sept. 15 and ending Sept. 14, 2017. The firm has been doing lobbying work for DuPage since 2011.

Meanwhile, BGR Government Affairs might be paid $80,000 to represent the county between Sept. 1 and Aug. 31, 2017.

If Roger C. Marquardt & Co. is hired, the Wheaton-based firm will be paid $45,000 for a period beginning Sept. 15 and ending Sept. 14, 2017.

One of the company's employees, John "Chip" Humes of Addison, would coordinate the county's lobbying efforts with the state.

"We strongly believe in having someone from DuPage County as a member of the team to be the lead person," Curran said. "He (Humes) is going to be the DuPage lead in Springfield."

As part of its proposed contract with DuPage, NJ Kimme & Co. would get $55,000 to do lobbying work from Sept. 15 to Sept. 14, 2017.

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