Omnibus with ICBA-advocated fixes signed into law

President Joe Biden signed into law the $1.5 trillion government funding omnibus with ICBA-advocated provisions related to the SBA’s 504 loan program and LIBOR.

504 Program: Due to unusually high demand, the 504 program was on pace to exhaust its $7.5 billion lending authorization level in June, which would have shuttered it more than three months before the fiscal year ends Sept. 30.

  • After ICBA and other groups called on Congress to increase the 504 program’s authorization level, the omnibus sets funding authorizations at $11 billion for the regular 504 program and $5 billion for debt refinancing.

LIBOR: Meanwhile, the absence of clear guidance and a consistent federal standard for “tough legacy” contracts with interest rates based on LIBOR has posed uncertainty, reduced liquidity, and increased volatility for investors, consumers, and securities issuers.

  • The omnibus includes an ICBA-supported provision directing the Federal Reserve to determine replacement rates that can be used for contracts lacking fallback language, by providing a safe harbor should the contract not specify a non-LIBOR replacement rate.

Flood Insurance: The omnibus also includes an ICBA-supported extension of the National Flood Insurance Program through Sept. 30.

Cyber Reporting: Additionally, a provision requiring cyber incident reporting for critical infrastructure avoids excessive burdens on community banks, includes liability protections, and requires harmonized regulations, as advocated by ICBA.