Former Black Aide Pleads No Contest

A former aide to House Speaker Jim Black pleaded no contest to charges that she broke state lobbying laws as she worked to encourage lawmakers to create a state lottery. Prosecutors accused Meredith Norris of working as an unregistered lobbyist from March 2005 to August 2005, the day lawmakers narrowly approved the lottery. Prosecutors said before that vote, and while Norris served as Black's unpaid political director, she courted lawmakers on behalf of a company expected to bid for the lottery, Scientific Games. The company was expected to bid for work with the Norris was sentenced to one year unsupervised probation, a $500.00 fine, and 75 hours of community service.