UH hires lobbyist as external adviser
UH has hired lobbyist Robert Miller as an external adviser for the UH Political Action Committee.
Texas forbids schools from utilizing state funds to lobby the Legislature. However, many schools have hired outside lobbyists which enables them to utilize donor money.
“It doesn’t mean a state agency can’t lobby; it means you can’t take state-appropriated money and use it for lobbying,” said Buck Wood, an Austin attorney who specializes in ethics and election law, told the Houston Chronicle.
Miller is being paid an estimated $96,500 as part of a “legislative session-only” contract.
“The decision was made to make sure we had appropriate legislative coverage in Austin for the session,” UH said in a statement to the Houston Chronicle. “This is not out of the ordinary, as many universities and institutions of higher education currently employ external advisers, as well.”
Miller will join Jason Smith, UH’s vice president for governmental and community relations, and Darrin Hall, UH’s liaison for local and federal priorities.