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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ICBA Welcomes Introduction of Senate Deposit Insurance Bill

Washington, D.C. (July 29, 2005) - The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) thanked Sens. Mike Enzi (R-WY), Chuck Hagel (R-NE), Tim Johnson (D-SD), and Wayne Allard (R-CO) for introducing the Federal Deposit Insurance Reform Act of 2005. "This is an important bill for America's consumers and the stability of our financial system," said ICBA Chairman David E. Hayes, president of Security Bank in Dyersburg, Tenn.

The bill would reform and strengthen the Federal deposit insurance programs that protect depositors in banks, thrifts and credit unions. It provides for inflation adjustments for deposit insurance coverage levels and increases coverage of certain retirement accounts, which will help deposit insurance keep up with inflation and maintain its value over time for our nation's savers. Federal deposit insurance is part of the economic safety net for our nation's families, workers and retirees, and should not be allowed to wither away.

In addition, the bill contains other reforms that will strengthen the deposit insurance system and make it more stable by smoothing out premium volatility, creating a range in which the reserve ratio can float in lieu of a hard target, providing rebates to financial institutions when the funds are in excess, instituting a risk-based assessment system, and merging the bank and thrift insurance funds. ICBA strongly supports these reforms.

"The strength of our nation is our local communities, and this legislation will help keep more deposits in our local communities working for its citizens," Hayes added. "ICBA thanks these lawmakers for their thoughtful consideration and hard work on this proposal. We look forward to working with them to get the legislation enacted."