The Securities and Exchange Commission, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board recently announced that the inaugural Compliance Outreach Program for Municipal Advisors will be held in Chicago on Nov. 3.

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations, in coordination with the SEC’s Office of Municipal Securities, is partnering with FINRA and the MSRB to sponsor the program, which is similar to the annual compliance outreach programs for broker-dealers and investment advisors.

The SEC announced in mid-August that it had launched examinations of newly regulated municipal advisors.

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations said then that it would conduct focused, risk-based examinations of municipal advisors that are registered with the SEC, but are not registered with FINRA.

OCIE said that its exam initiative will take place over the next two years and be conducted in three primary phases: engagement, examination and informing policy.

The municipal advisor program will provide municipal advisor professionals a forum for discussions with regulators about risk management, regulatory issues, and compliance practices.

“The municipal advisor program will be a good opportunity for new municipal registrants to better understand regulatory expectations,” said Kevin Goodman, national associate director of the SEC’s broker-dealer and municipal advisor examination programs, in a statement. “The program will allow registered municipal advisors to interact with all three regulators, which is an important aspect of our overall outreach efforts.”

Mike Rufino, FINRA’s head of member regulation-sales practice added in the statement that “this program will provide municipal advisor compliance professionals across the country with the opportunity to hear directly from their collective regulators on the issues and expectations regarding municipal advisors. Compliance Outreach Programs also provide us with an opportunity to hear from municipal advisor firms regarding their day-to-day compliance initiatives.”

Lynnette Kelly, executive director of the MSRB, said in the statement that “the outreach program will help reinforce the importance of complying with rules being developed for the municipal advisor community.  We are pleased to participate in this event and help educate advisors on their responsibilities.”

There is no cost to attend the program.  Registration is open to all municipal professionals with limited seating available and preference given to employees of registered municipal advisors on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those wishing to attend in person must register.

It is not necessary to register to view via webcast. Information regarding accessing the webcast will be posted on the SEC website on the day of the event.

Check out SEC Begins Exams of Municipal Advisors; Focus on “Identified Risks” on ThinkAdvisor.