SEC Charges 71 Cities And States With Fraud

5211
SOURCENationofChange

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced this week that 71 municipal issuers, including several cities, schools, and the states of Hawaii and Minnesota, had been charged with misleading investors. Without admitting or denying the allegations, all 71 parties agreed to settle, update their policies, and cooperate with any subsequent federal investigations.

“The diversity among the 71 entities in these actions demonstrates that continuing disclosure failures were a widespread and pervasive problem in the municipal bond market,” stated Andrew Ceresney, Director of the SEC Enforcement Division. “The MCDC (Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation) Initiative has brought attention to this important issue and resulted in increased compliance by municipal issuers and underwriters.”

A voluntary self-reporting program targeting misstatements and omissions in municipal bond offering documents, the MCDC Initiative encourages municipal bond underwriters, issuers, and obligated persons to self-report specific federal violations in exchange for favorable settlement terms. According to the SEC, obligated persons are typically nonprofit entities such as hospitals and colleges that borrow the proceeds of bond issuances and are obligated to pay principal and interest on the bonds.

Between 2011 and 2014, the SEC found that the 71 entities had sold municipal bonds with documents offering false statements. The issuers and obligated persons also failed to provide their investors with annual financial reports or any basic information concerning their municipal bond holdings.

Instead of facing trials, the parties agreed to settle the actions and to cease any future violations. The entities also agreed to update any policies, procedures, and training to include the disclosure of federal crimes while cooperating with any subsequent investigations.

Below is a list of the 71 entities that the SEC has accused of misleading investors.

Alabama:

City of Vestavia Hills

Board of Education of Madison County

Alaska:

Borough of North Slope

Arkansas:

Board of Trustees of Arkansas Tech University

California:

City of Alameda

Colorado:

Boulder County

Thompson School District No. R2-J

Colorado Department of Transportation

Connecticut:

Lawrence & Memorial Corp. and Lawrence & Memorial Hospital

Town of Fairfield

Delaware:

Delaware Transportation Authority

Georgia:

Fulton County

Hawaii:

State of Hawaii

Idaho:

Idaho Housing and Finance Association

Illinois:

Palatine Park District

Community Unit School District Number 18 (Blue Ridge)

Metropolitan Airport Authority of Peoria

Indiana:

City of Gary

Sanitary District of the City of Gary

City of South Bend

Iowa:

City of Cedar Rapids

City of West Des Moines

Kansas:

Unified School District No. 418 (McPherson County)

City of Andover

Kentucky:

Kentucky Housing Corporation

Electric and Water Plant Board of the City of Frankfort

Louisiana:

East Ouachita Parish School District

Maine:

Town of York

Maryland:

Montgomery College

Montgomery College Foundation

Massachusetts:

City of Chelsea

Michigan:

Berrien County

Minnesota:

State of Minnesota

Mississippi:

Lauderdale County

Missouri:

Ascension Health Alliance

Black Jack Fire Protection District of St. Louis County

Blair Oaks R-II School District

Montana:

Montana Department of Transportation

Nebraska:

City of Alliance

New Hampshire:

Southern New Hampshire University

New Jersey:

Borough of Roselle Park

Township of East Brunswick

New Mexico:

El Castillo Retirement Residences

New York:

Franklin County

City of Ithaca

Syracuse University

Westchester County Health Care Corporation

North Carolina:

North Carolina Eastern Municipal Power Agency

North Dakota:

City of Devils Lake

Ohio:

The Ohio State University

Oklahoma:

City of Nichols Hills

Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency

Yukon Municipal Authority

Pennsylvania:

Adams County

Collegium Charter School

Hazleton Area School District

Municipal Authority of the City of McKeesport

South Carolina:

City of Columbia

Town of Hilton Head Island

South Dakota:

Tea Area School District 41-5

Tennessee:

City of Memphis

Texas:

Pecos County

Utah:

Heber Light & Power Company

Vermont:

Casella Waste Systems

Virginia:

Carilion Clinic

Washington:

City of Bainbridge Island

Public Utility District No. 1 of Whatcom County

West Virginia:

County Commission of Ohio County

Wisconsin:

City of Oconomowoc

Wyoming:

Wyoming Community Development Authority

FALL FUNDRAISER

If you liked this article, please donate $5 to keep NationofChange online through November.

Fall 2019

$
Select Payment Method
Personal Info

Credit Card Info
This is a secure SSL encrypted payment.

Donation Total: $5.00 One Time

COMMENTS

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.