Magazine article American Banker

House Panel Passes Reg Tweaks, but Partisan Tensions Remain

Magazine article American Banker

House Panel Passes Reg Tweaks, but Partisan Tensions Remain

Article excerpt

Byline: Victoria Finkle

WASHINGTON -- The House Financial Services Committee approved nearly a dozen regulatory reform bills for community banks and credit unions on Thursday, though Democrats signaled they remain concerned about efforts to roll back the Dodd-Frank Act and consumer protection measures.

The 11 bills largely flew through the banking panel with bipartisan support, albeit after hours of debate on Wednesday. The legislative package includes a popular bill allowing financial institutions to send out privacy notices when the disclosures change rather than annually, a measure that would keep confidential any privileged information shared between state and federal regulators and a provision to decrease check-clearing times in some U.S. territories. All three passed with unanimous support.

The panel also passed bills that would make changes to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's structure and rules. The bills would refigure how certain points and fees are calculated under the agency's "qualified mortgage" rule; require the CFPB to hold open meetings; create a small business advisory board at the agency; and establish an appeals process for areas to be designated as "rural" under the QM rule. Additional legislation would allow privately insured credit unions to access the Federal Home Loan Bank System, exempt some mortgages from escrow account requirements, remove some manufactured housing from being considered "high cost" and direct the banking agencies to complete a study on capital requirements for mortgage services. …

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