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• AGRICULTURE. Former Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s (D-Ark.) Lincoln Policy Group has signed two new clients: SRA International, an information technology consulting firm that also provides professional services to the government; and software company SAP America. Both companies are lobbying to help the Department of Agriculture’s Farm Services Agency modernize its IT systems to make its farmer loan program more Internet-friendly. A Government Accountability Office report from 2011 said those efforts were falling behind. 

• NATIVE AMERICAN ISSUES. Ietan Consulting has registered to lobby for Table Mountain Rancheria, a tribe whose settlement is located in Fresno County, Calif. The tribe, which owns and operates Table Mountain Casino, is involved in a battle over a state-level initiative known as Proposition 48. The proposition would allow the North Fork Rancheria tribe to build a hotel and casino that would not be located on its reservation. The federal government and state of California have signed off on that deal, but Table Mountain Rancheria opposes it, arguing it would expand gambling off historic tribal lands.

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• HEALTHCARE. Boutique lobbying firm Chamber Hill Strategies is helping nonprofit healthcare organization BJC Healthcare beef up its Washington presence. Lobbying forms note that the firm will be working on a slew of Medicare issues, including payment policies and “Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI)-related initiatives.” There is a bipartisan team of lobbyists working on the account, including the former health policy advisor to Senate Finance Committee Republicans, Jennifer Bell; and Michaela Sims, a former legislative counsel to former Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.). 

• BUSINESS. Import Sterilization, Inc., an animal food manufacturing company, has hired law and lobby firm Adams and Reese to work on issues related to importing birdseed. Recent disclosure forms say the firm will be working on issues related to “import tariff and alternative impairments to the importation of sterilized bird seed.” The forms don’t get more specific, but federal regulators have been discussing whether birdseed mixtures that contain hemp — which comes from the cannabis plant, the same that produces marijuana — fall under drug regulations.