President Obama on Friday signed a long-term highway bill that included several regulatory relief provisions long advocated by ABA. These measures, now signed into law, will:
- Expand the number of banks eligible for the 18-month exam cycle.
- Equalize the SEC registration and de-registration thresholds for savings and loan holding companies.
- Reduce the burden of unnecessary privacy notice paperwork.
- Expand Trups CDO relief for smaller bank holding companies.
- Establish a process for designating an area rural for purposes of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau exemptions.
These and other provisions are key parts of ABA’s Agenda for America’s Hometown Banks. Many are also included in Sen. Richard Shelby’s broader reg relief bill, which has been the primary target of ABA’s Pass Reg Relief Now campaign.
“These provisions were enacted thanks to tireless advocacy by ABA and state association member bankers,” said ABA EVP James Ballentine. “Together they comprise a helpful first step, but much more needs to be done to correct a regulatory imbalance that treats small, midsize and regional banks like global institutions. We continue to urge Congress, and the Senate in particular, to do more to help America’s hometown banks do their jobs.”
ABA has strongly voiced its continued opposition to the Federal Reserve Bank dividend cut included in the highway bill as a revenue raiser. While the final version exempts more banks than originally proposed, it was opposed by a unified banking industry as setting a dangerous precedent.
Negotiations continue in the Senate on the spending bill due this week, and ABA continues its Pass Reg Relief Now campaign urging senators to pass reg relief either through the spending bill or as a standalone measure. ABA is this week running ads on drive-time radio in the D.C. area, in copies of the Washington Post delivered to Capitol Hill and in Politico’s popular morning financial newsletter. Bankers in town for ABA leadership meetings will also advocate in person on Capitol Hill.