Magazine article American Banker

Star-Studded Cast to Appear on Capitol Hill for Discussion of Regulatory Reform

Magazine article American Banker

Star-Studded Cast to Appear on Capitol Hill for Discussion of Regulatory Reform

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON -- It's kind of like one of those occasional Hollywood extravaganzas with 15 big-name stars, a good script, and a lot of early media attention, but nobody lining up to see it.

That's how you might describe the report of Vice President George Bush's interagency task group on regulatory reform, which after 13 months in the making, premiered in January 1984 (and in book form last July).

So far, there hasn't been much attention paid by Congress to the recommendations. But this week many of the people "who made it all possible" -- like Mr. Bush, Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul A. Volcker, and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman William M. Isaac -- will be on Capitol Hill to discuss the recommendations. It could be the start of a long, slow process, toward implementing some of them.

The Bush group's 120-page report, titled "Blueprint for Reform," contains proposals for simplifying and streamlining the federal regulatory system for the financial services industry. These include: consolidations and reorganizations involving the three federal bank regulatory agencies; putting the Justice Department in charge of overseeing depository institution mergers; and giving the Securities and Exchange Commission authority over the securities activities of depository institutions.

The House government operations subcommittee on commerce, consumer, and monetary affairs, whose chairman is Democratic Rep. Doug Barnard Jr. of Georgia, this week will explore the ins and outs of the Bush recommendations.

Today, the Vice President is scheduled to meet privately with the subcommittee members to discuss the report.

On Tuesday, there will be a public hearing, with the planned witnesses being Mr. Isaac, SEC Chairman John S.R. Shad, Federal Home Loan Bank Board Chairman Edwin J. Gray, and Mr. Bush's aide, Richard C. Breeden, who led the staff work on the report. …

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