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Nielson complains lobbyist from governor is a bother

Sen. Howard Nielson, R-Provo, complained in a Senate Republican caucus meeting this week that a "lobbyist" has been coming onto the Senate floor and bothering him while debate is in progress, defying established Senate protocol.

Nielson further revealed the lobbyist in question is associated with Gov. Mike Leavitt's staff and has asked Nielson if he needs any help or information regarding the governor's position on specific legislation."It happened twice," Nielson said. "I kind of resented the approach. . . . I'm very irritated at the governor today."

Lobbyists are supposed to send a message to a senator, via a Senate page, if they wish a talk.

"Do we have any control over the governor's lobbyist?" Nielson asked Senate President Lane Beattie.

Beattie, R-West Bountiful, said the governor likely would have his assistant stay off the Senate floor if asked, but he suggested informing the governor might not be necessary. "I have a feeling they'll read about it in the paper," Beattie said.