May 20, 2015

In Case You Missed It: What They’re Saying About “The Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015”

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY: “The Dodd-Frank reforms were passed with the good intentions of protecting consumers and taxpayers and of stopping predatory lending that targeted lower-income families and contributed to the foreclosure crisis, but provisions in the law, including appraisal independence regulations, created unintended consequences for Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofit organizations providing responsible homeownership opportunities to families without access to bank mortgages.”

“Habitat urges the Senate to bring this bill forward for consideration as soon as practicable, so Habitat can continue to serve as many qualified families around the country as possible.”

– Christopher Ptomey, Habitat for Humanity International’s director of government relations

CONFERENCE OF STATE BANK SUPERVISORS: “The introduction of a discussion draft of the ‘Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015’ is a welcome development that advances policy makers’ work on regulatory right-sizing.”

“Right-sized regulation and supervision of community banks will require Congress, federal regulators, and state banking agencies to rethink how we approach regulating and supervising community banks.  CSBS welcomes efforts by Congress to tailor policies to the community bank business model for the benefit of consumers and local economic development and to support the role of state regulators.”

BIPARTISAN POLICY CENTER: “Nearly five years after the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act, draft legislation released on Tuesday by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL) is an important step forward in the effort to continue with financial reform.”

“We share Chairman Shelby’s commitment to providing common-sense regulatory relief to financial institutions, such as community and regional banks, without undermining important financial safeguards in Dodd-Frank.  We are also encouraged by measures in the draft legislation that improve the transparency and accountability of market participants and financial regulators, including the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC).”
Aaron Klein, Director of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Financial Regulatory Reform Initiative

AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE’S PAUL KUPIEC: “The Democratic characterization of Sen. Richard Shelby’s (R-Ala.) draft reform bill, Regulatory Relief and Protection of Consumer Access to Credit, as ‘a sprawling industry wish list of Dodd-Frank rollbacks’ is complete nonsense. The proposed Dodd-Frank reforms are focused and balanced. Some changes make needed repairs to sloppy legal language in the original law while others provide clear main-street benefits by cutting unproductive and unnecessary regulations that reduce credit availability. Nothing in the bill can be construed as a ‘Wall-Street’ giveaway and there is no risk that the changes will endanger the financial system.” 

AMERICAN BANKERS ASSOCIATION, CREDIT UNION NATIONAL ASSOCIATION, INDEPENDENT COMMUNITY BANKERS OF AMERICA, AND THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FEDERAL CREDIT UNIONS:  “On behalf of the nearly 14,000 financial institutions of all charter types represented by the undersigned trade associations, we write to express appreciation for the advancement of the ‘Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015’ discussion draft.  We appreciate the focus and commitment to addressing urgently needed regulatory relief for financial institutions and the millions of consumers they serve.”
“We strongly urge bipartisan agreement and Congressional action that will result in a genuine focus on real-world issues financial institutions face as they serve their communities.”

MID-SIZE AND REGIONAL BANKING INSTITUTIONS: “On behalf of the undersigned mid-size and regional banking institutions, we are writing to express our support for the recently proposed Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015.”

“In particular, we applaud Chairman Shelby’s efforts to strengthen systemic risk regulation by refining the $50 billion threshold and the application of enhanced prudential standards under Section 165 of Dodd-Frank. Title II of the bill takes the right approach to refining and targeting the Dodd-Frank Act’s focus on institutions that actually present systemic risk. We look forward to working with the Committee on this proposal as it moves forward.”

American Express (New York, NY), Arvest Bank (Fayetteville, AR), Associated Bank (Green Bay, WI),  Astoria Bank (Lake Success, NY), BancorpSouth (Tupelo, MS), Bank of Hawaii (Honolulu, HI), Bank of the West (San Francisco, CA), BankUnited (Miami Lakes, FL), BB&T (Winston-Salem, NC), BBVA Compass (Birmingham, AL), BOK Financial (Tulsa, OK),  Capital One (McLean, VA), Central Bancompany (Jefferson City, MO), Citizens Bank (Providence, RI), City National Bank (Los Angeles, CA), Commerce Bank (Kansas City, MO), East West Bank (Pasadena, CA), Eastern Bank (Boston, MA), EverBank (Jacksonville, FL), Fifth Third Bank (Cincinnati, OH), First Citizens Bank (Raleigh, NC), First Hawaiian Bank (Honolulu, HI), First Horizon Bank (Memphis, TN), First Midwest Bank (Itasca, IL), First National Bank (Hermitage, PA), First National of Nebraska (Omaha, NE), First Niagara (Buffalo, NY), FirstBank (Lakewood, CO), FirstMerit Bank (Akron, OH), Flagstar Bank (Troy, MI), Frost Bank (San Antonio, TX), Fulton Financial (Lancaster, PA), Hancock Bank (Gulfport, MS), Huntington Bancshares Inc. (Columbus, OH), IBERIABANK (Lafayette, LA), International Bancshares (Laredo, TX), M&T Bank (Buffalo, NY), MB Financial (Chicago, IL), Old National Bank (Evansville, IN), OneWest Bank (Pasadena, CA), Pacific Western Bank (Los Angeles, CA), People’s United Bank (Bridgeport, CT), Popular Community Bank (New York, NY), PNC Bank (Pittsburgh, PA), The PrivateBank (Chicago, IL), Raymond James Bank (St. Petersburg, FL), Regions Bank (Birmingham, AL), Scottrade Bank (Saint Louis, MO), Signature Bank (New York, NY), Silicon Valley Bank (Santa Clara, CA), SunTrust Banks Inc. (Atlanta, GA), Susquehanna Bank (Lititz, PA), Synovus Bank (Columbus, GA), TCF Bank (Wayzata, MN), Texas Capital Bank (Dallas, TX), Trustmark (Jackson, MS), UMB Financial (Kansas City, MO), Umpqua Bank (Portland, OR), United Bank (Charleston, WV), Valley National Bank (Wayne, NJ), Webster Bank (Waterbury, CT), Wintrust Financial (Rosemont, IL)

NATIONAL DIVERSITY COALITION: “The National Diversity Coalition (NDC), based on a thirty year history of working with and criticizing banks and regulators, has examined Senator Shelby’s bipartisan Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015.  In many ways, many of its provisions are consistent with the concerns that Black, Latino and Asian American churches, minority chambers of commerce representing small businesses and minority non-profits have as to the present Dodd-Frank Act.”

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF INSURANCE COMMISSIONERS: “We applaud Chairman Shelby’s leadership in releasing a discussion draft of 'The Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015.' While we are still reviewing the details of the proposed legislation, we were very pleased to see the inclusion of the bipartisan Policyholder Protection Act and International Insurance Capital Standards Accountability Act, as well as reforms to the Financial Stability Oversight Council’s non-bank designation and annual reevaluation processes. These critical provisions will protect insurance consumers, encourage more transparency regarding international insurance standard-setting discussions, and help reduce systemic risk in our financial system.”

COMMUNITY MORTGAGE LENDERS OF AMERICA: “We are pleased Congress is listening to, and acting upon, the concerns expressed by small banks and mortgage bankers about the increasing costs and difficulties in supplying affordable mortgage credit to consumers.  Chairman Shelby’s proposal is a strong start to the dialogue necessary to produce a bi-partisan, regulatory streamlining bill.”
– Paulina McGrath, CMLA Chair and President of Republic State Mortgage, Houston, TX.

CONSUMER BANKERS ASSOCIATION: “Chairman Shelby’s discussion draft appropriately addresses the repercussions of the ‘one-size-fits-all’ framework implemented by the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.  We appreciate the Chairman’s thoughtful approach to regulatory relief for U.S. financial institutions and, given the bipartisan support for a number of these provisions in the past, hope Republicans and Democrats can work together in the coming days to advance these reforms.”

– Richard Hunt, CBA’s President and CEO.

AMERICA’S MUTUAL HOLDING COMPANIES: “We wish to express our appreciation for the release of the ‘Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015’ discussion draft.  We support this action as we believe it facilitates a meaningful dialogue for regulatory relief for mutual banks and mutual holding companies.  Specifically, we appreciate the inclusion in Title I section 113 of the draft, proposing relief from costly and time consuming Federal Reserve Board application requirements for mutual holding company dividend waivers.”

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANIES, PROPERTY CASUALTY INSURANCE ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, AND THE INDEPENDENT INSURANCE AGENTS AND BROKERS OF AMERICA: “We urge your support for the Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015. The legislation contains several important bipartisan insurance consumer protections that are strongly supported by the insurance regulators and the marketplace. These bipartisan insurance provisions would strengthen the Dodd-Frank Act and underscore the intent of Congress that protecting insurance consumers should be a priority in the regulation of insurance companies.”

“All the insurance provisions in the Committee bill are bipartisan and supported by the insurance regulators – Republican and Democratic. They address specific consumer protection concerns raised in Congressional hearings. They are supported by our members ranging from small mutual insurers and independent insurance agencies to large U.S. international companies – the vast majority of the home, auto and business insurance marketplace. Please ensure that Congressional financial reform includes these critical bipartisan insurance policyholder protections.”