Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm landed herself in hot water recently.
Between the dates of April 30, 2021 and October 26, 2021, Granholm reported making nine stock trades.
Trading stocks as the Energy Secretary is not illegal but here’s where the problem comes in: Granholm failed to disclose these trades until mid-December which is weeks or, in some cases, months past the deadline, which was first uncovered by Insider.
In 2012, Congress passed what’s known as the STOCK Act which was designed to thwart members of the government from trading on insider or congressional knowledge. It’s also intended to prevent conflicts of interest by forcing government insiders to disclose all stock trades within 30 days of execution.
First time violators of the STOCK Act face a fine of $200, but according to Insider it’s unclear if Granholms’s paid any penalties.
Granholm’s camp claims she’s is compliance with the law and this was a “clerical” mistake.
“This was an inadvertent clerical oversight on reporting stock sales that ethics officials previously determined did not pose a conflict in her role as Energy Secretary and the Secretary paid the late filing fee,” said a Department of Energy spokesperson.
However, the problems don’t end there. Granholm traded shares of Gilead Sciences — a pharmaceutical contractor with the federal government– and Vivint — a home security company– which has recently become involved in the green energy sector further raising suspicion of her stock market activity.