Pruitt granted extension to file financial disclosure form

Pruitt granted extension to file financial disclosure form
© Greg Nash

Federal employees were required to submit their financial disclosure forms Tuesday, but Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittGovernment watchdog probing EPA’s handling of Hurricane Harvey response Wheeler won’t stop America’s addiction to fossil fuels Overnight Energy: Trump rolls back methane pollution rule | EPA watchdog to step down | China puts tariffs on US gas MORE's was not one of them.

Pruitt is among 70 EPA employees who requested and was granted a filing extension by the EPA, an agency spokesperson confirmed Wednesday.

Currently 366 employees at the EPA are required to file the annual public financial disclosure forms that list any outside work they do to ensure that there are no conflicts. At the agency, candidates and appointed special government employees must fill out a detailed form annually.

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"EPA may grant extensions of up to 90 additional days for good cause. This year more than 70 employees have requested and been granted a filing extension. Administrator Pruitt was one of the employees who sought and was granted an extension,” Kevin Minoli, the EPA's designated agency ethics official, said in a statement to The Hill. 

Last year, Pruitt listed assets from his job as Oklahoma attorney general prior to starting at the EPA in February, as well as various incomes from bonds, trusts and his home mortgage.

EPA spokesperson Jahan Wilcox said that it was not uncommon for EPA administrators to ask for extensions.

“Historically, prior EPA Administrators, including those in the previous administration, have also regularly sought and received extensions," Wilcox said in a statement.

Public financial disclosure forms show that Gina McCarthyRegina (Gina) McCarthyCalifornia commits to 100 percent renewable energy by 2045 Overnight Energy: Watchdog faults EPA over Pruitt security costs | Court walks back order on enforcing chemical plant rule | IG office to probe truck pollution study EPA unveils new Trump plan gutting Obama power plant rules MORE, an EPA administrator during the Obama administration, utilized a 90 day extension for her 2015 disclosure.

Pruitt testified earlier Wednesday in front of a Senate Appropriations subcommittee where he was asked various questions related to controversies about his spending and ethics — including a decision last summer to rent a $50-a-night condo from the wife of a notable energy lobbyist whom Pruitt called a friend.

At least one other political aide at the EPA has been criticized for failing to file a financial disclosure form during his time at the agency. Kevin Chmielewski, the former deputy chief of staff of operations at the EPA turned whistleblower, did not fill out a form during his time there, according to a ProPublica report.

Failure to file can be a potentially serious offense that has in past cases lead to judicial action.