Oxfam America filed a lawsuit this week against the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for unlawfully delaying oil, gas and mining transparency provision of Dodd-Frank Act. Over a year has passed since the legally mandated deadline for the new regulations. From Oxfam America’s press release:
Washington, D.C. – International relief and development organization Oxfam America has today filed a lawsuit against the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for unlawfully delaying the issuance of a Final Rule implementing a provision of the Dodd-Frank Act that requires disclosure of payments from oil, gas and mining companies to the United States and foreign governments. Known as Section 1504 or the “Cardin-Lugar” provision of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, this provision would provide information to investors and citizens in resource-rich countries, help stem corruption, and encourage the accountable use of billions of dollars in annual revenues from the oil, gas and mining sector.
Congress set a deadline of April 17, 2011, for the SEC’s promulgation of the final rule that is needed to bring Section 1504 into effect. The SEC has now missed this statutory deadline by one year and one month. Oxfam America notified the SEC on April 16, 2012 that it would file suit if the regulatory agency did not issue a final rule within 30 days. As Oxfam America’s lawsuit states, “the extractive payment disclosures that Congress mandated nearly two years ago will not take place unless and until the SEC issues a Final Rule. Unfortunately, the SEC’s pattern of delay gives no assurance that it will ever promulgate a Final rule without the involvement of this Court.” The SEC issued a proposed rule on December 15, 2010.
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