PROVIDENCE, R.I. - General Treasurer Gina M. Raimondo today announced that the Securities and Exchange Commission has completed their investigation of the State's pension financial disclosures and will not pursue any enforcement action.
"Our pension practices are transparent, our disclosure is accurate, and our pension system is on a firm foundation," Raimondo said. "Any cloud that lingered over our pension disclosure is gone. Our public employees and retirees should have greater peace of mind today."
The SEC investigation of the financial statements and disclosures about the $7.7 billion Employees' Retirement System of Rhode Island began in early 2011 and examined disclosure in bond offering documents related to pension finances from 2007 to the beginning of Raimondo's term, in 2011.
"This is a well-deserved result for Rhode Island," said Paul Maco, a partner at Bracewell & Giuliani. "The SEC, as a matter of policy, will not explain its reasoning. From my perspective, several factors may have been influential. Treasurer Raimondo's Truth in Numbers initiative, combined with adding an overall robust commitment to state of the art financial disclosure, training, and best practices to existing good disclosure, plus decisive legislative action on pension reform, all likely influenced the SEC's decision to end its investigation of the State."
Rhode Island fully cooperated with the SEC investigation. At the same time Raimondo introduced new measures to strengthen pension disclosures and identify and implement best practices to ensure the public's trust. During the investigation, Rhode Island also enacted landmark pension reforms, assuming a leadership role among the states.