COLUMBUS: Open government advocates are asking Ohioís top law enforcer to investigate a conservative legislative group they allege has falsely claimed tax-exempt status while engaged in Statehouse lobbying.

The request to Attorney General Mike DeWine adds to a long list of state attorneys general asked by advocacy group Common Cause to probe the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC.

The nonprofit founded in 1973 comprises nearly 2,000 state legislators as well as private sector officials.

It has come under increasing fire this year from liberal activists. Armed with newly available information on the group, they allege ALECís corporate structure, retreats and scholarship fund for lawmakers and their families foster unchecked influence over state lawmaking.

The group has said it doesnít lobby. An ALEC spokeswoman did not immediately return a message Thursday.