From: Kay Evans [Kevans@MSRS.ORG]
August 26, 2003
Jonathan C. Katz, Secretary
Dear Mr. Katz:
I am writing on behalf of the Maine State Retirement System's Board of Trustees and the System's more than 171,000 members and retirees to express appreciation and strong support for the Securities and Exchange Commission's work on behalf of shareholders, in proposing new and expanded disclosures on companies' proxy statements.
The proposal responds well to the concerns of shareholders that their interests are not well served by current disclosure requirements. The specificity of the requirements is particularly noteworthy and desirable, as clear, consistent and widely-applicable changes are what is necessary, not more opportunities for company-by-company interpretation. The Commission has appropriately and effectively moved beyond what the securities exchanges have proposed to require with respect to director nominations and nomination processes.
The System also believes that the rules, when they are proposed for public comment and as adopted, should embody stronger requirements in certain areas than are set out in the proposal. The areas that should be strengthened are those identified and discussed in the letter of August 15, 2003 to the Commission from the Council of Institutional Investors, and the System fully agrees with and supports that letter.
We will follow with very great interest the Commission's continuing work on these matters.
Kay R.H. Evans, Executive Director
Tel: (207) 512-3190