SEC pay to play settlements and more political law links

SEC SETTLEMENTS.  WSJ  (h/t S. Sholk).  “Ten investment firms agreed to pay fines totaling more than $660,000 to settle charges by the Securities and Exchange Commission alleging they managed public pension money illegally after their employees made contributions to state political races.”

10 FIRMS VIOLATED PAY TO PLAY RULES.  SEC.  “The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that 10 investment advisory firms have agreed to pay penalties ranging from $35,000 to $100,000 to settle charges that they violated the SEC’s investment adviser pay-to-play rule by receiving compensation from public pension funds within two years after campaign contributions made by the firms’ associates.”

WHO GOT FINED?  BI.  “Here’s what happened, according to the SEC: In 2013, an employee at Pershing Square made a $500 campaign contribution to a candidate for governor of Massachusetts. Such a donation was not allowed because that candidate, if elected, had the ability to influence the selection of investment funds for the state’s pension plan, PRIM.”

SENTENCING IN IOWA CASE.  WHO. “Former State Senator Kent Sorenson will spend 15 months in prison for breaking campaign finance laws during the 2012 presidential campaign.”

NO LIMIT FOR STEYER.  Bloomberg.  “Tom Steyer, the billionaire environmental activist who spent at least $87 million on the 2016 election, said he can’t begin to estimate how much of his fortune he’ll put toward fighting Donald Trump’s presidency.”

CO:  ETHICS STALL.  DP.  “A Denver City Council committee on Tuesday delayed a vote on an ethics bill until Feb. 21 after members voiced confusion over new limits on meals and tickets they can accept from donors with a city interest.”

CT:  CU CHALLENGE.  Courant.  “Aresimowicz wants to hear ideas at a hearing that’s likely to happen in February. One idea he’s floating is to require out-of-state ‘independent expenditure’ groups to disclose all contributors, as in-state groups must do – not just the largest five.”

MT:  BILL OPPOSED.  BG.  “A bill to allow statewide and legislative candidates to use surplus funds from a past election in their next campaign for office drew opposition from the commissioner of political practices, who said incumbents would have an unfair advantage.”

PA:  LARGEST ETHICS FINE.  PM.  “The fine is the largest in the 10-year history of Philadelphia’s Ethics Board. Per the settlement agreement, Williams admitted his failure to disclose five sources of income and 89 gifts on the City Statements of Financial Interests he filed between 2010 and 2015. An amended statement Williams filed last August did not disclose 10 additional gifts.”

SC:  LEATHERMAN SEEKS DISCLOSURE.  PC.  “Senate President Pro Tempore Hugh Leatherman is aiming to start the ethics reform battle again this year with a renewed attempt to rid South Carolina of anonymous campaign donors and their so-dark money.'”


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