An advisory committee to the Securities and Exchange Commission unanimously has voted to exempt the 70% smallest public companies in the U.S. from Sec. 404 internal-audit control requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, provided they implement other types of audit controls. The committee also found that costs associated with implementing Sec. 404 fell more than 30% for smaller companies and about 44% for larger ones. The SEC commissioners are expected to decide on the various recommendations next month after a public meeting to discuss them.