This past April, hundreds of community bankers descended upon Washington D.C. to advocate against burdensome regulation and “too big to fail” institutions. Community bankers heard from Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), who railed against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and argued for a tiered regulatory approach between large, regional and community banks. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and David Vitter (R-LA) were also in attendance to talk about the potential game-changing legislation that would end “too big to fail” and impose stringent capital requirements on the largest financial conglomerates.
With the ICBA Plan for Prosperity in hand, our group of Nine South Dakota community banking advocates headed to the hill for meetings with Senator Thune, Senator Johnson and Representative Noem. Your elected officials were receptive to the Plan for Prosperity Agenda. The meetings with the elected officials and their respective banking policy advisors hold a lot of value for the opportunity to interact and keep our elected officials aware that we are following the votes and that we want to keep them focused on what is good for community banks in South Dakota.
The biggest news during the summit occurred on the second day when the bi-partisan “too big to fail” S. 798 legislation, crafted by Sens. Brown (D-OH) and Vitter (R-LA) was introduced. The bill was immediately embraced by the ICBA. ICBA and ICBSD supports this bill because it would do what Dodd-Frank intended but couldn’t accomplish (break up mega banks), and also because regulatory relief provisions for community banks are included in the legislation.
It is more important than ever for community bankers to continue to share our story with Washington D.C. We must continue to talk about what steps Congress can take to allow Main Street to grow and prosper. If you have not reviewed the plan for prosperity, it can be found on our website. Below is a list of specific bills you should become familiar with that ICBSD is tracking.
· Terminating Bailouts for Taxpayer Fairness Act of 2013 (S. 798 or TBTF Act).
· H.R. 1553 and S. 727 that would create an expedited appeal process and establish a new ombudsman at the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council to improve exam consistency.
· The Community Lending Enhancement and Regulatory Relief Act of 2013 (H.R.
1750), sponsored by Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), would exempt community
banks with assets of less than $10 billion from the Sarbanes-Oxley 404(b) internal controls assessment mandates. The exemption threshold would be adjusted annually to account for any growth in banking assets.
· The Eliminate Privacy Notice Confusion Act (H.R. 749), introduced by Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO)
· The Privacy Notice Modernization Act (S. 635), introduced by Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Jerry Moran (R-KS) (This provision is also included in S. 798)
· The Municipal Advisor Oversight Improvement Act (H.R. 797), introduced by Reps. Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Gwen Moore (D-WI)
· Section 2 of the Responsible Financial Consumer Protection Regulations Act (S. 205), introduced by Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS), and replaces the single CFPB Director with a Senate-confirmed, five-person Commission, among other provisions
As you can see from the list, many bills are moving through Congress and our work is ongoing. I would encourage you to consider attending next year’s Washington D.C. Policy Summit. Mark your calendar now for the 2014 ICBA Washington Policy Summit which will take place April 29 – May 2, 2014 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC.
McCurry, a native of MN and resident of Mitchell, SD, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications / Marketing from the Minnesota State University, Mankato. Prior to joining the ICBSD as President and CEO, he directed the marketing, sales and government relations efforts at Santel