Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) today introduced ABA-advocated legislation that would allow institutions chartered under the Home Owners Loan Act to elect to operate more like national banks without having to change their charters. This legislation – part of ABA’s Agenda for America’s Hometown Banks – mirrors House bill H.R. 1660, introduced by Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.), and is based on a concept set forth by Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry, who had experience with a similar approach to charter flexibility in Massachusetts.
“ABA has long championed greater flexibility for HOLA chartered institutions to allow them to adapt their business models to changing demographics and changing needs in their communities,” said ABA EVP James Ballentine. “This bill is a critical step toward allowing these taxpaying community institutions to grow and adjust their lending to meet the demands of the communities they serve.”
Bankers from across the nation met with members of both the House and Senate to advance charter flexibility legislation as part of the ABA’s Mutual Community Bank Conference and Government Relations Summit, which were both held earlier this week in Washington, D.C. The introduction of the Senate bill means that both chambers will now have the opportunity to consider the legislation, an important step in what will be an abbreviated legislative session prior to the presidential election this fall. The House Financial Services Committee approved H.R. 1660 by voice vote in November 2015.