FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ICBA Thanks House Financial Services Committee for Passage of ICBA-Advocated Regulatory Relief Legislation for Community Banks
Washington, D.C. (Nov. 14, 2013)—Bill Loving, chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) and president and CEO of Pendleton Community Bank, Franklin, W.Va., and Camden R. Fine, ICBA president and CEO, today praised the House Financial Services Committee for unanimously passing ICBA-advocated legislation that would make it easier for community bank and savings and loan holding companies to support their capital needs. H.R. 3329, introduced by Reps. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.) and Patrick Murphy (D-Fla.) and part of ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity regulatory relief platform, would direct the Federal Reserve to increase the qualifying asset threshold of the Small Bank Holding Company Policy Statement from $500 million to $1 billion and allow small savings and loan holding companies to be covered by its provisions.
“ICBA greatly appreciates the work of House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) in advancing much-needed regulatory relief items through the committee on a bipartisan basis,” Loving said. “This important legislation would help ease some of the astounding regulatory burdens that our nation’s nearly 7,000 community banks face. While there is still more work to be done, this key item would help an additional 515 bank and savings and loan holding companies raise capital for additional consumer and small-business lending—loans that will ultimately help create jobs and elevate local economies.”
Passage of this bill comes at a critical time in the association’s effort to relieve community banks from unnecessary and harmful regulatory burden. Earlier this year, the House passed ICBA-advocated legislation (H.R. 749) to eliminate the requirement that financial institutions mail annual privacy notices even when no change in policy has occurred. That measure is awaiting a vote in the Senate.
In addition, ICBA and community bankers nationwide this week launched a grassroots blitz urging Congress to pass the Community Lending Enhancement and Regulatory (CLEAR) Relief Act of 2013 (H.R. 1750/S. 1349), which enjoys growing bipartisan support. The CLEAR Relief Act advances provisions in ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity that would offer community bank exemptions from mortgage and auditing regulations and support additional capital opportunities for community bank holding companies. Community bankers have been making phone calls and sending emails urging their members of Congress to cosponsor the legislation.
The regulatory relief provisions in the CLEAR Relief Act are designed to ease excessive, redundant and costly regulations to help community banks dedicate more of their resources to promoting economic growth. Included in the act are provisions to:
- exempt community bank portfolio loans from onerous new mortgage rules to support the housing recovery,
- support additional capital opportunities for community bank holding companies, and
- provide exemptions for community banks from costly Sarbanes-Oxley internal-controls assessment mandates.
For more information about H.R. 3329, the CLEAR Relief Act and ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity, visit www.icba.org.
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for nearly 7,000 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. For more information, visit www.icba.org.