ICBA Announces 2016 Community Banking Policy Priorities

Mar 08, 2016

New Orleans (March 8, 2016)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) today announced its top legislative and regulatory priorities for 2016. ICBA made the announcement at its ICBA Community Banking LIVE® national convention in New Orleans.

“ICBA’s advocacy priorities will continue to focus on common-sense policy reforms that will help ensure community banks can continue meeting the needs of local communities,” said ICBA Incoming Chairman Rebeca Romero Rainey, chairman and CEO of Centinel Bank of Taos, N.M. “Through targeted reforms that promote regulations tiered to the size and risk profile of community banks, policymakers can foster a more equitable regulatory environment and create jobs that lead to stronger local economies.”

ICBA’s top priorities for 2016 include:

RELIEF FROM CRUSHING REGULATORY BURDEN: Enacting targeted regulatory relief via ICBA’s icbaplanforprosperity platform to help community banks support the credit needs of their customers, serve their communities, and contribute to their local economies.

MORTGAGE LENDING REFORM: Reforming Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) mortgage rules to protect responsible loan products that meet consumers’ diverse needs.

CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU: Supporting legislation that ensures accountability at the CFPB by replacing single-director governance with a five-member commission and promoting greater participation by the prudential banking regulators.

DATA SECURITY AND FRAUD: Advocating data-security principles that deter retailer data breaches, such as requiring the costs to be borne by the party that incurs the breach and implementing robust processes like those already mandated for banks.

CYBERSECURITY: Balancing voluntary cybersecurity information sharing with the need to secure customer information while ensuring federal cybersecurity legislation, regulatory frameworks or guidance recognizes existing community bank mandates.

CURRENT EXPECTED CREDIT LOSS MODEL: Opposing the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s costly and onerous Current Expected Credit Loss model and advocating an alternative approach for community banks.

FAIR LENDING: Calling for consistent and transparent standards for evaluating community bank fair-lending practices and opposing any cause of action under the Fair Housing Act for disparate impact without a finding of intentional discrimination. 

PAYMENTS SYSTEMS ACCESS AND GOVERNANCE: Supporting payment systems that are competitive, progressive and secure and that offer fair and open access to all community banks so they can meet the existing and evolving global payment needs of their customers.

TAX-EXEMPT CREDIT UNIONS: Urging Congress to end the credit union industry’s unwarranted federal tax subsidy and opposing expanded powers for the industry as long as it remains exempt from taxation and the Community Reinvestment Act.

TAX-ADVANTAGED FARM CREDIT SYSTEM: Urging Congress to abolish the Farm Credit System or, at minimum, restrict it to its historical mission of serving the agricultural marketplace if FCS lenders continue to expand into non-farm lending.

“PAY FORS” TARGETED AT THE BANKING SECTOR: Strongly opposing the recent trend of targeting the banking sector with “pay fors,” such as taxes and fees, to fund new government spending unrelated to banking.

COMMUNITY BANK ACCESS TO CAPITAL: Supporting legislative and regulatory changes that would improve the ability of community banks to raise capital to meet the credit and banking needs of their local communities.

TAX POLICY: Advocating tax laws that promote robust economic activity and a vibrant community banking sector and foster saving and investment.

ENDING TOO-BIG-TO-FAIL: Curbing or ending the advantages enjoyed by too-big-to-fail banks that have resulted in a financial system plagued by excessive concentration, systemic risk, moral hazard and distorted free markets.

For the comprehensive list of ICBA’s 2016 Policy Resolutions, click here. For more information, visit www.icba.org.

About ICBA
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for more than 6,000 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services.