US Lawmaker Proposes Drastic Cut to SEC Chief’s Salary

A U.S. legislator has taken a bold step by introducing a proposal to reduce the annual salary of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair, Gary Gensler, to a symbolic one dollar. Representative Tim Burchett has submitted an amendment to the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) bill, aiming to align with a broader initiative to defund the regulatory body.

The FSGG bill, unveiled on July 13, encompasses a range of measures geared toward trimming federal expenditures. Gary Gensler, who is estimated to earn over $300,000 annually for his role at the SEC, has become a focal point in the push for fiscal responsibility through this legislative amendment.

Burchett is not the sole advocate for cutting SEC funding, as the overall bill proposes substantial reductions for several government agencies. Representative Steve Womack, who presented the bill to the House Rules Committee on November 6, underscored the SEC as an example of regulatory overreach. He suggested that defunding the SEC could help curb its “intrusiveness” and refocus it on its original mission.

Womack emphasized the necessity of halting SEC rulemakings that lack thorough cost-benefit and aggregate impact analyses. While recognizing the agencies’ vital roles, he argued that many have veered from their intended purposes, ultimately harming the American public.

Representative Steve Womack stated, “To be clear, the agencies under our jurisdiction perform important functions; however, many have strayed from their mandate, and the results have been a true disservice to the American people.”

Criticism of the SEC and Gary Gensler by U.S. officials is not a recent development. On June 12, Representatives Warren Davidson and Tom Emmer introduced the SEC Stabilization Act, which, among its provisions, called for Gensler’s removal as chair. The bill proposed a restructuring of power within the SEC, the establishment of an executive director role, and the addition of a sixth commissioner to prevent one political party from dominating.

Davidson continued his criticism in August, characterizing Gensler’s approach to the cryptocurrency sector as “arbitrary and capricious” and publicly advocating for his dismissal using the hashtag #FireGaryGensler.

In contrast, on October 25, Gensler maintained his skeptical stance toward the cryptocurrency industry, expressing doubts about whether crypto service providers comply with the financial regulations of the world’s largest capital market. Additionally, he drew parallels between attorneys reaching agreements with crypto entities and the business model employed by digital asset operators, arguing that the economic reality underscores how the “vast majority of crypto assets likely meet the investment contract test” and are, therefore, considered securities.

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