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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ICBA Commends Congress for Passing Bankruptcy Bill

Washington, D.C. (April 14, 2005) - The president and CEO of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA), Camden R. Fine praised Congress today for passing a bankruptcy reform bill that was eight years in the making. "This bill will restore the principles of fairness and personal responsibility to our bankruptcy system, while protecting and enhancing the rights of consumers," he said.

The House today passed the bill by 302-126 vote. The Senate passed an identical bill last month. The President said he will sign it into law.

The bill creates a needs-based bankruptcy formula that would direct filers into Chapters 7 or 13 depending on their ability to pay. It will curtail abuses in the bankruptcy system that have raised the cost of credit for all Americans.

"This is a win-win for everybody, both consumers and lenders" Fine said. "ICBA congratulates the Congress for its commitment and persistence."