January 21, 2011
From reviewing the summary of the proposed permanent rule, it appears that the definition of Municipal Advisor and Municipal Advisory Activities is broad enough to encompass citizen volunteers who serve on Finance Committees for local governments. For decades, the City of St. Cloud, Florida, like many other municipalities, has utilized a Finance Committee to receive citizen input on a variety of municipal-finance issues, including proposed tax increases, budgets and bond issues. If this proposed rule will require these unpaid citizens to register then it is highly unlikely that an individual will be willing to serve the City. Additionally, as City Attorney, I am charged with the responsibility of advising appointed board members with regard to compliance issues related to their appointments. Unless this rule is, not adopted, revised or is not intended to apply to these citizens and this is confirmed, I will advise the committee members to comply with the Rule. I anticipate that upon receiving that advice, the individuals will inquire as to the level of personal risk they are exposed to in fulfilling this volunteer position. Once they understand the risk and the requirements they must meet, I am certain the appointed members will no longer wish to serve the City in this capacity and the City will no longer have the benefit of a citizens finance committee. Thank you.