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Lawmakers meet with SEC to discuss regulation of municipal bond market

Spencer Bachus

Spencer Bachus

Legislators met with the SEC recently and discussed a number of recommendations from the commission’s July report on the municipal market.

Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), the former chairman and current chairman emeritus of the House Financial Services Committee, said that the SEC report was discussed at a meeting last week, during which concerns regarding the lack of regulatory oversight of the municipal bond market were also discussed, according to The Bond Buyer.

The SEC report made a number of recommendations intended to increase transparency and liquidity in the municipal bond market, including a call to grant the SEC the authority to regulate issuers’ disclosures. Bachus did not indicate whether he supports the legislation but said that the report would likely lead to a cooperative effort by both the SEC and Congress.

Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.), another member of the HFSC, said on Wednesday that the SEC’s recommendations must be assessed to determine the necessity and balance of such measures. Moore said that the public is “concerned about regulatory creep” and new rules being issued by the SEC, The Bond Buyer reports.

SEC Commissioner Dan Gallagher echoed some of Moore’s concerns, saying that the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act resulted in “a dramatic increase in the volume and pace of the SEC’s rule-making.” The SEC has adopted final rules that implement approximately one-third of its 100 designated mandates.

“It’s no exaggeration to say the SEC is handling 10 times its normal rule-making volume,” Gallagher said earlier this month, according to The Bond Buyer.

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