February 1, 2010
I concur on the release of the Fiscal Year 2011 President’s Budget and Performance Plan. While the budget requests a needed increase of 55% over the Commission’s Fiscal Year 2010 budget, I have some concerns as to how this increase is allocated. Technological resources are critical to the Commission’s ability to carry out its mission. For too long the Commission has been playing a game of catch-up. The Commission’s technology has not evolved to that of the marketplace. The result is that the Commission is unable to astutely study and respond to ordinary trading practices or technological trading innovations, such as algorithmic trading. While the FY 2011 budget requests an increase in the amount of money budgeted for technology, the proposal makes critical technology investment contingent upon new authorities granted by Congress. The Commission does not require additional authority to improve its technology capacity to perform necessary market surveillance. Congress should not condition any investment in technology funding upon passage of a financial reform package. Instead, Congress should consider offsetting this investment by restraining expenditures on non-mission critical programs and new initiatives if the requisite authorities are not granted or funding shortfalls dictate a reduction below the requested levels.
Last Updated: June 14, 2010