The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed the Encouraging Employee Ownership Act (H.R.1343) by a bipartisan vote of 331 to 87. The bill would ease current Securities and Exchange Commission rules, making it easier for private companies to provide stock-based compensation to employees. The bill would increase to $20 million the current $5 million cap on the amount of stock closely held companies can award employees before triggering certain SEC reporting requirements. The amount would be indexed for inflation annually. The bill was received in the Senate and referred to committee.