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Industry group challenges Artists Against Fracking

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By The Associated Press
Saturday, March 30, 2013, 1:47 p.m.

ALBANY, N.Y. — A formal complaint filed with New York's lobbying board asks it to investigate whether Artists Against Fracking, a group formed by Yoko Ono and son Sean Lennon, is violating the state's lobbying law.

The complaint obtained by The Associated Press was made by the Independent Oil & Gas Association to the state Joint Commission on Public Ethics.

The energy trade group based its request for an investigation on an AP report that found that Artists Against Fracking and its advocates didn't register as lobbyists.

Registration requires several disclosures about spending and activities.

A spokesman for Artists Against Fracking says the group's activities are protected because they were made during a public comment period.

He also says celebrities involved in the group are protected because they are longtime activists, not lobbyists.

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