Lobbying, Spending by Dominion Energy Increase Tenfold As Legislation Was Drafted

Dominion Energy’s tenfold increase in spending to influence Virginia politicians was prompted by the spread of “fake news and propaganda perpetuated by anti-energy groups,” a company spokesman said.

Recently filed disclosure forms show the state’s biggest electric utility and most politically powerful company spent more than $1 million on lobbyists, entertainment, meals and communications from May 2017 to the end of April 2018. That’s about 10 times what the company said it spent in last year’s filing.

The spending came during a period when the company successfully pushed through legislation that could lead to substantial increases to electric bills.

Dominion spokesman David Botkins said the company’s stepped up “education outreach” was needed “to break through the fake news and propaganda perpetuated by anti-energy groups.”