Obama delays financial disclosure deadline

Federal employees will have a little more time before their financial disclosures go online.

On Aug. 16, President Barack Obama signed a bill that would delay by one month the deadline for putting those records on public websites.

The bill, S. 3510, which was introduced Aug. 2, pushes back the deadline for posting the financial disclosure forms of employees of the Executive and Legislative branches on official websites by one month, which is Sept. 30.

The bill also specifies that periodic transaction reports of House Members and employees must include transactions of their spouses or dependent children, according to the White House.

The new law amends the provisions in the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act (S. 2038), which Obama signed into law in April.

The STOCK Act directs the administration to ensure financial disclosure forms filed in a calendar year by Executive branch employees are publicly available on official websites of agencies. The disclosures also apply to members of Congress, candidates for Congress, and congressional employees. Agencies and congressional officials have to post the forms online 30 days after they’re filed.

The STOCK Act required the disclosure forms to start going online by Aug. 31.

The Office of Government Ethics has to develop systems to enable the electronic filing and public access to the disclosure forms.

The same the day bill was introduced, the Senior Executives Association joined with three other organizations and seven individuals as lead plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union to injunction to block the STOCK Act disclosure provision.

"SEA does not object to financial reporting requirements but does object to making the personal financial information of Senior Executives subject to invasive public scrutiny while serving no legitimate public purpose," Carol Bonosaro, SEA's president, said in a statement Aug. 2.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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