DETRIOIT (AP) — The auto industry paid about $31.2 million in the first six months of the year toward lobbying federal lawmakers and bureaucrats, according to a newspaper's analysis published Saturday.
The spending, which came amid a debate in Washington about increasing fuel economy standards, is up 14 percent from $27.3 million the same period a year ago, the Detroit Free Press reported.
General Motors Corp. spent $7.8 million, up from $6.2 million a year earlier. GM spokesman Greg Martin said not all of the increase was tied to the fuel economy debate, ''but the preponderance of it is.''
Ford Motor Co.'s lobbying expenses declined to $4.2 million from $5.1 million a year earlier. Ford spokesman Alan Hall said the decrease was part of overall cost cutting effort at the automaker.
The lobbying tab for Chrysler, which at the time was owned by DaimlerChrysler AG, increased to $3.7 million from $3.4 million. DaimlerChrysler finalized the sale of a majority stake in Chrysler in early August.
Toyota Motor Co.'s spending rose to $2.7 million from $2.1 million, while Nissan Motor Co.'s spending rose to $3 million from $2.2 million. Honda Motor Co. spent $979,800, up from $929,400 in the year-ago period.
Other spending included in the industry's total was done by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers trade group, the United Auto Workers union and the National Automobile Dealers Association.