H.R. 3784 – SEC Small Business Advocate Act of 2016

The H.R. 3784 SEC Small Business Advocate Act was passed by the House of Representatives to establish an Office for the Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation. If passed into law, the Act will allow the office to provide the SEC with advice regarding the interests and well being of small businesses and investors. However, the office will not be allowed to provide any advice to the SEC regarding any policies, practices, or actions regarding the SEC’s enforcement program.

The Office of the Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation will function as an Advisory Committee to the SEC and will appoint a Head of Office. The Head of Office is required to:

  • Report directly to the Commission,
  • Be appointed by the Commission, after having prior experience advocating for the interests of small business, and
  • Not currently be employed by the Commission.

After consulting with the SEC, the Office may keep independent counsel, research staff, and service staff as deemed necessary. However, the Office may not have fewer than 10 members, but not more than 20. These staff members will be chosen from individuals who represent emerging growth companies, small public companies, or minority-owned businesses.

The Office is designed to:

  • Help small businesses and investors resolve any significant problems they face with the SEC,
  • Help small business benefit from changes from SEC regulations and identify the impact that these changes would have,
  • Help organize and plan the annual Government-Business Forum on Small Business Capital Formation,
  • Help identify any problems small business face in securing capital,
  • Submit annual reports to any necessary congressional committees, and
  • Consult with and advise the Investor Advocate on small business related issues.

This Committee will also help provide the SEC with advice on their regulations and policies and is aimed at protecting investors and small business companies.

Shelby Wayment
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