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ICBA Hails Obama Administration’s Proposed Two-Tier Regulatory Fee Structure

Mega-financial institutions should pay for the greater risk they present to taxpayers

Washington, D.C. (August 14, 2009)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) released this statement following reports that the Obama administration is proposing a two-tier regulatory fee structure for financial institutions—a key ICBA policy priority.

“ICBA is pleased that the Obama administration supports our nation’s more than 8,000 Main Street community banks by recognizing that they are common-sense lenders that didn’t participate in the risky practices that led to this financial crisis, and therefore, should not bear the burden for costs associated with new regulations and reforms. Instead, financial institutions that pose significantly more risk to our nation’s economic system should pay for costs associated with more rigorous regulation and oversight. ICBA fully supports the concept of a two-tier regulatory fee structure. If a firm chooses to engage in risky activities, or if it becomes so large that its instability presents a risk to the entire financial system, the firm should pay fees commensurate with the risk it poses.

“To further protect America’s taxpayers and the integrity of our economy, ICBA also calls on the administration to either downsize these mega-institutions or require them to divest sufficient assets so they no longer pose risks to the entire financial system.

“ICBA looks forward to working with the Obama administration and Congress on behalf of America’s community banks and the communities they proudly serve to ensure that regulatory reforms make our nation’s financial system even stronger than before the current economic crisis began.”