On March 16, Congressmen Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Jared Polis (D-Colo.) introduced the Financial Transparency Act of 2017 (H.R. 1530), a bipartisan bill intended “to amend securities, commodities, and banking laws to make the information reported to financial regulatory agencies electronically searchable.” Specifically, H.R. 1530 would require the Treasury Department to disseminate data standards for all financial regulatory agencies, while directing each agency to transform its regulatory reporting regime from disconnected documents into standardized, searchable data. The bill further provides that any information required by other laws to be public must be published as open data, and includes specific directives for the SEC to improve that agency’s existing data reporting regime.
Additional details concerning the proposed measure are explained in a summary prepared by www.datacoalition.org. U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (R-IL)—one of the bill’s co-sponsors and current Vice Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Securities and Investment—has also promoted the legislation in an op-ed for The Guardian, entitled How to stop the next Bernie Madoff.