The Securities and Exchange Commission plans to meet on Wednesday, Sept. 18 to consider whether to adopt new registration rules and forms for municipal advisors, including rule provisions that define who non-dealer MAs are.
The SEC announced the meeting on its website on Friday.
The Dodd-Frank Act mandated SEC and Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board oversight and regulation of non-dealer municipal advisors in 2010. The law generally defined MAs but left it up to the SEC to craft a more detailed definition.
While registration rules for MAs are in effect at the SEC and MSRB, the implementation of MSRB regulations governing them have been hampered by the SEC’s failure thus far to define the term municipal advisor.
The SEC’s proposed registration rules had broadly defined the term to include appointed members of governmental boards, generating criticism and opposition from lawmakers and market participants who said it cast too wide a net.
Reps. Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, and Gwen Moore, D-Wisc. sponsored a bill to define MAs more narrowly but some market participants complained their definition, which would apply to individuals engaged for compensation by an issuer or borrower to provide advice on muni issuances and products, contained too many loopholes and exemptions.
That bill would exempt swap advisors, for example, while Dodd-Frank said MAs should include swap advisors.
Lawmakers had been pushing the SEC to issue the final rule by the beginning of football season.
SEC Commissioner Dan Gallagher said in a recent interview that the proposed rule was a problem because it was too hastily written to comply with the mandatory deadlines of Dodd-Frank.
He said the proposed final rule should be much improved.