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ICBA Applauds Congress for Passing Deposit Insurance Bill

S. 896 Paves Way for FDIC to Reduce Proposed Special Assessment

Washington, D.C. (May 19, 2009)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) today applauded Congress for passing the Helping Families Save their Homes Act of 2009 (S. 896), critical deposit insurance legislation that paves the way for the FDIC to reduce the proposed special assessment that would have impeded community banks’ ability to lend to their communities during these economically challenging times.

“ICBA applauds Congress for passing this vital legislation that supports our nation’s more than 8,000 community banks and their continuing efforts to provide credit to their customers in cities and towns throughout America,” said R. Michael Menzies, ICBA chairman and president and CEO of Easton Bank and Trust Co., Easton, Md. “Reducing the special assessment is very important to community banks because they are common sense lenders that didn’t participate in the practices that led to this economic crisis, and, therefore, shouldn’t be asked to foot the bill for those who did. Community banks are part of the solution, not part of the problem.”

The legislation passed today by Congress increases the FDIC’s borrowing authority with Treasury from $30 billion to $100 billion, with emergency funding up to $500 billion. It also extends the temporary deposit insurance coverage hike to $250,000 until the end of 2013. The legislation paves the way for the FDIC to reduce the proposed special assessment by at least half.

“ICBA and our nation’s Main Street community banks continue to work every day on behalf of their communities, and the proposed FDIC special assessment has the potential to seriously jeopardize community banks’ role in our nation’s economic recovery effort—something that would only prove to be counterproductive during these times of economic challenge,” said Camden R. Fine, ICBA president and CEO. “ICBA is immensely pleased that Congress passed this legislation, which brings the FDIC one step closer to significantly reducing the proposed special assessment, making it more feasible for community banks to do what they need to do during this critical time—lend to America’s communities.”

ICBA thanks House Financial Services Committee Chairman Frank (D-Mass.) and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Dodd (D-Conn.) for their leadership on this legislation and Sen. Shelby (R-Ala.) and Rep. Bachus (R-Ala.) for their support of the bill. ICBA also thanks the entire House and Senate leadership for their support of S. 896. ICBA looks forward to the FDIC meeting to determine the reduction of the FDIC assessment on Friday afternoon.

For more information, visit www.icba.org.