UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
COMMODITY FUTURES TRADING COMMISSION
|NEIL GRINDELL||CFTC Docket No. 96-R86|
|†||ORDER OF SUMMARY AFFIRMANCE|
|COMMONWEALTH FINANCIAL GROUP, INC., ALLAN S. ADER, CHARLES P. HOFFECKER, and MICHAEL JAMES RENDINA, JR||†|
Our review of the record and the partiesí appellate submissions establishes that the findings and conclusions of the presiding officer are supported by the weight of the evidence; we therefore adopt them. We further conclude that the presiding officer committed no error material to the outcome of the proceeding and that the parties have not raised important questions of law or policy meriting extended discussion.
Accordingly, we affirm the initial decision.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
By the Commission (Chairperson BORN and Commissioners TULL, HOLUM, and SPEARS).
Jean A. Webb
Secretary of the Commission
Commodity Futures Trading Commission
Dated: February 27, 1998
† Grindell v. Commonwealth Financial Group, CFTC Docket No. 96-R86
Concurring Opinion of Commissioner John E. Tull, Jr.:
I concur with the majority in affirming the Initial Decision. The majority opinion distinguishes the outcome in this case from a recent Commission case, In re Staryk, CFTC No. 95-5, 1997 WL 778236 (CFTC December 18, 1997), by stating that "the Commissionís Rules presume that there will be an oral hearing in enforcement proceedings under Part 10 of the Rules, [and] the Rules presume that there will not be an oral hearing in a reparation case under the summary decision process in Part 12." Slip Opinion at footnote 1.
I believe that Respondents are not entitled to a hearing for two reasons. First, Respondents did not request a hearing. Secondly, the Commission Rules pertaining to reparationís cases do not dictate that respondents have a right to a hearing, but state that "[t]he Judgment Officer may order an oral hearing...when appropriate and necessary for the resolution of factual issues, upon motion by either a party or the Judgment Officer ." Commission Regulation 12.208(b), 17 C.F.R. 12.208(b) (1997). Thus, whether or not a hearing will be held, even if one is requested, is up to the discretion of the Judgment Officer.
I believe that every person should have the right to be heard and should be entitled to a hearing if one is requested. Thus, had respondents in this reparation case requested a hearing, they should be entitled to a hearing just as Staryk was entitled to a hearing. Since, the current reparations rules do not provide respondents with such a right, I believe it is time for the Commission to reexamine the Commission Rules relating to the reparation proceedings.