- A U.S. lawmaker proposes to reduce the salary of SEC Chair Gary Gensler to just $1 per year as part of a wider initiative to curb the regulator’s funding.
- The proposal is embedded within the Financial Services and General Government bill, which seeks to cut government spending and curtail perceived regulatory overreach.
In a bold legislative twist, United States Representative Tim Burchett has put forth a proposition that would see the salary of the Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Gary Gensler, reduced to a nominal $1 per annum. This suggestion is part of an amendment to the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) bill, which broadly aims to slash government expenditure, including the funds allocated to the SEC.
Funding Cuts in Focus
Introduced on July 13, the FSGG bill stands as a comprehensive legislative effort designed to cut back on governmental spending across various agencies. Within this context, Representative Burchett’s amendment zeroes in on the SEC’s budget, suggesting a significant pay cut for its chair from a salary well over $300,000 to a symbolic single dollar.
This amendment is not an isolated incident but part of a concerted effort among certain lawmakers to tighten the financial reins on the SEC. During the bill’s presentation to the House Rules Committee on November 6, Representative Steve Womack emphasized that the SEC had engaged in extensive regulatory overreach. According to Womack, the SEC’s expansive regulatory measures have imposed an excessive financial load on government resources, warranting a reduction in funding to refocus the agency on its fundamental objectives.
Womack articulated a need to halt rulemakings at the SEC that do not undergo thorough cost-benefit analysis, aiming to streamline the agency’s operations and minimize its “intrusiveness” in the market.
A Continuing Trend of Criticism
This legislative maneuver is not the inaugural instance of political pushback against Gary Gensler and the SEC. Previously, on June 12, U.S. Representatives Warren Davidson and Tom Emmer introduced the SEC Stabilization Act. A salient feature of this bill calls for Gensler’s removal as chair and proposes a redistribution of power within the agency, alongside the introduction of an executive director role and an additional commissioner to balance partisan influences.
The SEC, under Gensler’s leadership, has frequently been the target of criticism from several U.S. politicians, with Emmer denouncing Gensler as a
“bad faith regulator.”
The criticism centers around accusations of indiscriminate enforcement actions against the crypto community, overshadowing the regulatory body’s efficacy in addressing genuine malfeasance.
As these legislative proposals move through the halls of Congress, they underscore a palpable tension between the desire for effective financial regulation and the push for fiscal responsibility and governmental prudence in oversight.