FCA BOARD EXTENDS COMMENT PERIOD ON NATIONAL CHARTERS
The Farm Credit Administration (FCA), stating that it was “responding to requests from the public,” has announced it will extend the comment period on the controversial national charter proposal for an additional 30 days until April 20. ICBA sent a lengthy letter last week to FCA Chairman Mike Reyna and Board Member Ann Jorgensen seeking an extension of the comment period deadline originally set for March 19. ICBA’s letter also raised numerous objections to the FCA proposal. ICBA also sent a copy of our letter to all members of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees and their staffs along with a cover memo outlining several of our concerns.
National charters will benefit only the large FCS lenders at the expense of community banks and family farmers. FCS lenders will use these authorities to cherry-pick community bankers’ best agricultural credits even more than they are now, forcing community bankers to compete against new, large players in their local markets. National charters also lead to alliances with businesses, including non-agricultural businesses, as FCA and the FCC continue their relentless push for new powers in new markets.
Since the FCS is orchestrating a letter-writing campaign in support of this proposal, ICBA urges bankers to take advantage of this opportunity and write their own letters to the FCA. ICBA also urges bankers to raise objections to this proposal with members of Congress and their staff members. Bankers can find sample letters and other detailed information on the main page of ICBA’s Web site (www.icba.org) in our most recent article on this subject, or click on “Farm Credit System” under the “agriculture issues” link for more information. Letters to FCA should be faxed to: Mr. Thomas McKenzie, Director, Regulation and Policy Division, FCA, 703-734-5784, or emailed to email@example.com or through the Pending Regulations section of FCA’s Web site at www.fca.gov. Please also email or fax ICBA a copy of your letter to: firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-659-3604 attention Mark Scanlan.