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ABA joins CUNA, NAFCU in support of Luetkemeyer’s regulatory relief bill

200px-American_Bankers_Association_LogoThe American Bankers Association recently expressed support for the Community Lending Enhancement and Regulatory Relief Act sponsored by Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.).

The legislation—H.R. 1750—is intended to ease the regulatory burden for community-based financial institutions.

In a Friday letter to Luetkemeyer, the ABA said the regulatory burden has “grown dramatically in recent years,” adding that the legislation contains provisions long-advocated by the organization.

The bill would provide an exemption from the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act’s annual notice requirement for institutions that have not altered privacy policies and only share personal data within the statutory exceptions. The ABA said the provision would result in “significant savings in mailing costs for banks across the country.”

The bill would also require the SEC to conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis of any new or amended accounting principles.

“The bill would ensure that the best possible assessment is made of new accounting principles so that regulated entities are not subject to unnecessary costs that outweigh any potential regulatory benefit,” the ABA said.

Another provision in the bill would amend Sarbanes-Oxley to exempt institutions with total consolidated assets of $10 billion or less from management attestation requirements.

The qualified mortgage safe harbor would also be expanded under the bill to include loans originated and held by institutions with $10 billion or less in assets for a period of at least three years. The CFPB is also required to include balloon loans held by such creditors.

“ABA supports this provision, though the QM safe harbor is an area of great concern to banks of all sizes,” the ABA said. “Removing the size threshold would improve the provision significantly.”

The National Association of Federal Credit Unions and the Credit Union National Association have also expressed support for Luetkemeyer’s legislation.

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