|USDA Implementation of Section 1005 of the American Rescue Plan||Committee on Agriculture||06/14/21|
|ICBA Letter in Support of House ECORA||U.S. House of Representatives||03/25/21|
|Letter to Senate Ag Committee on B&I Programs||Senate Agriculture Committee||02/26/21|
|COVID Relief Package Should Include USDA Business and Industry Funding||House Rules Committee||02/25/21|
|Crop Insurance Coalition Budget Letter: Budget||House, Senate Budget Committees||02/24/21|
|Crop Insurance Coalition Budget Letter: Appropriations||House, Senate Appropriations Committees||02/24/21|
|Lender Letter to House Committees Regarding USDA Rural Development Loans||02/22/21|
|Letter Opposing CoBank Amendment||House, Senate Appropriations Subcommittees||12/04/20|
|ICBA Letter in Support of H.R. 8410||Rep. Andy Barr||10/08/20|
|Lender Livestock Trust Letter 7-28-20||U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry||07/28/20|
|Comments on Farm Credit System Appraisals||Farm Credit Administration||07/20/21|
|Letter to USDA on SDA Loan Payoffs||USDA||04/09/21|
|Comments on OMB MSA Proposal||OMB||03/18/21|
|Crop Insurance Coalition Budget Letter: Administration||USDA, OMB||02/24/21|
|ICBA Hemp Comment Letter 10-8-20||USDA||10/08/20|
|Agriculture Coalition Letter to Governors||Governors||03/24/20|
|Agriculture Spring Planting Season Letter to President Trump||President Donald Trump||03/19/20|
|ICBA Comment Letter on NEPA||CEQ||03/10/20|
|Comment Letter: USDA Hemp IFR January 29 2020||U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program||01/29/20|
|Reporting of Data on Loans to Small Businesses and Small Farms||FDIC, Fed, OCC||12/16/19|
|ICBA Review Review of Credit Conditions Report from Agricultural Lenders||House Agriculture Committee||Steven J. Handke||12/11/19|
|Review of Credit Conditions—Report from the Farm Credit Administration||House Agriculture Subcommittee on Commodity Exchanges, Energy and Credit||Written Statement||11/19/19|
Series of Congressional Hearings Needed to Examine Farm Credit System Abuses
Washington, D.C. (Dec. 2, 2015)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) today urged the House Agriculture Committee, which is reviewing the Farm Credit System (FCS), to conduct a series of hearings aimed at uncovering details of how the FCS is avoiding legal constraints. In a statement for today’s committee hearing, ICBA noted that the system’s regulator—the Farm Credit Administration (FCA)—has gone out of its way to allow FCS lenders to make otherwise illegal loans if such financing is labeled as “investments.”
ICBA explained that the FCA, after withdrawing a proposed investments regulation and pilot program, briefly published a guidance memo instructing FCS lenders how to gain approval to finance investments, including credit for non-farm businesses, communities, rural areas and infrastructure projects. “In other words, even though the FCS unsuccessfully lobbied Congress for years to receive expanded powers, FCA has suddenly and quietly decided to just allow FCS lenders to do whatever they want if FCA provides a rubber stamp of approval,” ICBA said.
ICBA also questioned huge loans by CoBank to Verizon, AT&T, U.S. Cellular and other large multi-national corporations. “CoBank’s newly found lending activities appear to be an effort to leverage their government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) advantages deeply into the realm of multi-national, non-agricultural, non-rural and non-cooperative corporate financial deals,” ICBA said.
Additionally, ICBA expressed community bankers’ alarm that the FCS leverages its GSE tax and funding advantages to cherry pick the financially strongest customers of community banks, which destabilizes ag loan portfolios of taxpaying rural banks. This increases risks to the community banking industry, leading to fewer lenders and less credit availability for rural America.
Finally, ICBA raised several questions regarding a secretive $10 billion line of credit the FCA gained on behalf of the FCS from the U.S. Treasury. “There should have clearly been hearings on a GSE seeking a $10 billion line of credit,” ICBA said. “If FCA believes the Farm Credit Act is as loose as to allow it to grant any type of financing desired by FCS lenders, then the act needs to be tightened. Congress never intended for FCS to be a general purpose rural lender.”
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.