Lobbying organizations in Wisconsin spent just under $8 million more on their efforts influencing policy in the 2017-18 session than they did the session prior, according to data submitted to the state’s Ethics Commission.

Initial figures reported Friday show nearly 800 lobbying organizations racked up about $70 million and the equivalent of about 15,585 days, or 43 years, of work attempting to sway the course of Wisconsin lawmakers and officials.

That’s just under $8 million more than the $63 million lobbying groups spent over the 2015-16 legislative session, despite logging slightly more time: the equivalent of about 15,987 days, or about 44 years, of work.

Lobbying organizations are required by state law to report the total amount of time and dollars spent directly communicating with lawmakers or state officials, as well as the time and money spent preparing and researching for communications affecting current or future areas of legislation.

The group that spent the most money lobbying Wisconsin lawmakers and officials over the last legislative session was the conservative Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, the state’s largest business organization that has consistently been a top tier spender on elections and lobbying.

Read more in the Wisconsin State Journal.