Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

From States' Rights to the Sunshine State

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

From States' Rights to the Sunshine State

Article excerpt

If ever a threat to the dual-banking system is ever so much as hinted at, the Conference of State Bank Supervisors wheels its guns into action. For the past seven years, the chief artillery officer in this battle for states' rights was James B. Watt, president and CEO of the group. Now Watt has retired to Florida.

Watt, a professor just before joining CSBS in 1989 and a veteran banker and bank trade association executive prior to that, says he'll miss being part of the daily combat somewhat, "but seven years in Washington is long enough."

The 56-year-old Watt believes he leaves behind a thriving state banking system that has withstood numerous threats over the last decade or so. Each time pundits predict the end of the system, most notably the passage of interstate banking and branching legislation, the state system just keeps chugging along, says Watt.

"There are those on Capitol Hill and those bureaucrats who would like to get rid of the state system, but I don't see that happening," says Watt. "That's because the industry continues to want a strong state system. …

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