The House Financial Services Committee will mark up four bills this morning beginning at 10 a.m.
At least one of these bills will draw significant controversy, the “SEC Regulatory Accountability Act” (H.R. 2308) introduced by Congressman Scott Garrett. The bill would greatly increase requirements on the Security and Exchange Commission to conduct cost-benefit analyses and periodic reviews on all rulemakings and most orders it issues. The effect of the bill would be to cripple the ability of the SEC to carry out its regulatory functions, and would make it difficult to protect investors even when the SEC has evidence of fraud or other wrong-doing.
Barney Frank, Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, has called the bill an “egregious attack on the SEC."
Today’s debate over the bill is expected to be another pitched battle over financial regulation and, in particular, the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed in 2010 by Democrats over the overwhelming opposition of House and Senate Republicans. In the 112th Congress, House Republicans have attempted to repeal provisions of the bill, starve the agencies like the CFTC and the SEC which would partly administer the act, and cripple the effectiveness of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The House Financial Services Committee will also mark up three other bills – the Reopening American Capital Markets to Emerging Growth Companies Act of 2011 (HR 3606), a bill by Representative Nan Hayworth (H.R. 1838) which would fully repeal Section 716 of the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and a bill to further protect the confidentiality of information shared by corporations with the CFPB.