By Ricardo Wells
THE Public Disclosures Commission has held several meetings in recent weeks, according to Chairman Myles Laroda, who yesterday suggested the unit was still reviewing the status of various 2016 and 2017 filings.
Addressing the recent actions of the PDC, Mr Laroda told The Tribune the unit was now meeting “regularly,” but still wasn’t in a position to add anything “new”.
He also claimed neither he nor his unit could address any ongoing issues with filings from the 2016 and 2017 periods, or the government’s self-imposed deadline to prosecute delinquent public officials under the Public Disclosure Act.
However, he said clarification could come “probably soon”.
There was a July 3 timeline set by Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis for the files on delinquent disclosures to be sent to the Office of the Attorney General.
Since then the first annual deadline for newly elected members of Parliament and senators to submit their full disclosures has also passed.
The government has, in the past, used the initial deadline - which coincided closely with the expiration date of board appointments - as the main reason for inaction.
Additionally, Mr Laroda has also said the PDC had problems meeting because of a mould issue in their office.
When contacted yesterday, Mr Laroda said: “I have nothing sensational to add at this time. Nothing sensational to say. We are meeting. I can say that. We are meeting regularly and we may have something, probably soon.”
Asked if the government had adjusted its stance on its deadline, Mr Laroda added: “No, not to my knowledge. There are no new deadlines coming. If anything changes with that, that won’t come from me or the commission. We aren’t in that sort of position.”
The Tribune then questioned if filings from the 2016 and 2017 periods were waived and whether or not complete focus was now being given to the 2018 period, to which Mr Laroda contended: “No such discussion has been had.”
He continued: “We had, among other things, discussions on the 2016 and 2017 period. So, as far as I am aware, those issues are still something we are dealing with.”
In the case of people appointed or elected after the annual March 1 deadline, the Public Disclosure Act states that disclosures must be filed within three months from the date - effectively, August 10 for MPs and August 22 for senators.
On July 12, Mr Laroda said at least three people failed to file their disclosures in the time the prime minister allotted.