NextEra Energy, Inc. | Lobbying Expenditures Disclosure at NextEra Energy, Inc.

AGM date
Previous AGM date
Resolution details
Company ticker
Resolution ask
Report on or disclose
ESG theme
  • Governance
ESG sub-theme
  • Lobbying / political engagement
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Company HQ country
United States
Resolved clause
RESOLVED, shareholders request the preparation of a report, updated annually, disclosing:
Company policy and procedures governing lobbying, both direct and indirect, and grassroots lobbying communications. Payments by NextEra used for (a) direct or indirect lobbying or (b) grassroots lobbying communications, in each case including the amount of the payment and the recipient. NextEra’s membership in and payments to any tax-exempt organization that writes and endorses model legislation. Description of management’s and the Board’s decision-making process and oversight for making payments described in sections 2 and 3 above.For purposes of this proposal, a “grassroots lobbying communication” is a communication directed to the general public that (a) refers to specific legislation or regulation, (b) reflects a view on the legislation or regulation and (c) encourages the recipient of the communication to take action with respect to the legislation or regulation. “Indirect lobbying” is lobbying engaged in by a trade association or other organization of which NextEra is a member.
Both “direct and indirect lobbying” and “grassroots lobbying communications” include efforts at the local, state and federal levels. 
The report shall be presented to the Governance and Nominating Committee posted on NextEra’s website.  
Whereas clause
WHEREAS, full disclosure of NextEra Energy’s (“NextEra’s”) lobbying activities and expenditures to assess whether NextEra’s lobbying is consistent with its expressed goals and shareholder interests.
Supporting statement
             NextEra spent $46,125,000 from 2010 – 2021 on federal lobbying. This does not include state lobbying, where NextEra spent $2,684,118 on lobbying in California from 2010 – 2021 and has come under scrutiny for an “exclusive, invite-only lounge for lawmakers and lobbyists” in Florida.[1]
Companies can give unlimited amounts to third party groups that spend millions on lobbying and often undisclosed grassroots activity. These groups may be spending “at least double what’s publicly reported.”[2] NextEra discloses its dues payments to trade associations that lobby, but critically fails to disclose its payments to politically active social welfare groups (SWGs), like Broken Promises[3] or Mothers for Moderation. NextEra’s disclosure also has a loophole for trade association lobbying payments, failing to disclose “amounts for which the trade association directly pays tax on the portion that is not deductible.”
NextEra’s lack of disclosure presents reputational risk when it hides payments to dark money SWGs. Highlighting these risks, peer FirstEnergy was fined $230 million for funneling $60 million through SWG Generation Now in an Ohio bribery scandal.[4] S&P notes the Ohio scandal has increased “scrutiny of how utilities use ‘dark money’ groups.”[5] In Florida, a “ghost candidate” scandal has led to scrutiny of NextEra’s contributions to SWGs,[6] including calls to investigate its dark money spending.[7] Records show that NextEra gave $14.15 million to Mothers for Moderation in 20188 and that a “secretive political spending plan” was emailed to a NextEra executive.[8] 
It is a risk for shareholders that NextEra does not disclose its SWG contributions, and we urge NextEra to expand its lobbying disclosure.
[7];   8 

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