• Register Today For IBANYS' 2017 Annual Convention: The Power Of Community Banking  September 25 - 27 In Niagara Falls. . . See our "one-stop" Registration & Information Packet below!
  • IBANYS To Meet With DFS Superintendent Vullo, State Senate Banks Chairman Hamilton
  • Former IBANYS Chairman Bob Fisher Testifies On Community Bank Regulatory Relief
  • ACTION ALERT: Contact Your Representatives--Support the CLEAR Relief Act
  • Invite Your Local Representatives To Your Bank This August
  • And Much More!

Your IBANYS Team: 
Working Together To Make 2017 A Great Year 
For New York C ommun ity Banks !

In This Issue

Quick Links

Have You Contributed to NYSIBPAC This Year?
If not...now is the time! We need your help in this statewide election year to support candidates and committees who understand community banks' needs.  Can we count on you?
for our 2017 PAC contribution form. Help support IBANYS' political action efforts in New York State.


July 19, 2017

The Time Has Come! Register For. . . 
Two New Concepts Will Be Introduced. . .

Summer is now in full swing - but September is just around the corner.  That means it's time to make your plans to attend IBANYS' 2017 Annual Convention  -- "The Power of Community Banking" -- September 25-27. Our meeting space will be in the Niagara Falls Convention Center, and our sleeping room accommodations are directly across the street at the Sheraton at The Falls in Niagara Falls, New York. 

To help you get the ball rolling, we are pleased to provide this "one-stop" information and registration packet. It contains everything you need to know in terms of our schedule of events, agenda and itinerary, available activities, silent auction, sponsorship opportunities, tradeshow/ exhibitor updates, and accommodations. 

We've been working hard to ensure this year's conference will be IBANYS' best ever! We're bringing back many of our convention traditions, including our silent PAC auction, golf and recreational activities, business trade show, six- minute drill presentations and general and concurrent business sessions and roundtable discussions featuring a full array of speakers. This year, we're also introducing exciting new concepts such as our "Emerging Leaders" program and our "Innovation Showcase" that we hope will become new convention traditions.
Please review -- and share with your colleagues 
-- our Registration and Information Brochure. It really does provide all the details you and your bank's team need to get ready to participate in our 2017 Annual Convention, and explains all that Niagara Falls has to offer!   We can't wait to welcome you in just over two months!

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Calling all ladies! 
Join us for an exclusive cooking class including mimosas and truffles  at the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute during the IBANYS Annual Convention this fall.  Space is limited.

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IBANYS To Meet With DFS Superintendent Vullo, Senate Banks Chairman Hamilton
IBANYS will be participating in two important meetings this week and next to further our issues and positions. We'll be at a roundtable discussion on community banking in Buffalo with NYS Senate Banks Committee Chairman Jesse Hamilton (IDC, Brooklyn) and Senator Tim Kennedy (D-Western New York). Then, we'll meet with New York State Department of Financial Services Superintendent Maria Vullo.   At the Buffalo roundtable, IBANYS' President & CEO John Witkowski and a group of community bank executives from the region will will discuss the policies, priorities, contributions and importance of New York's community banking industry. At the meeting with the Superintendent, President Witkowski will engage in a dialogue and present background on a number of issues, from cyber security, mortgage policy, credit unions, to a follow-up to last year's meeting that IBANYS organized for state chartered community banks with DFS senior leadership. We'll keep IBANYS members posted on these important ongoing dialogues.  


New York's Bob Fisher To Congress: 
Time For Community Bank Regulatory Relief 
Last week, former IBANYS Chairman Bob Fisher (President & CEO, Tioga State Bank and a fifth-generation community banker) testified at a hearing of the House Financial Services
Rep. Tenney with Bob Fisher
Committee's Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit on the need for Targeted Regulatory Relief for Community Financial Institutions. He discussed provisions in ICBA's "Plan for Prosperity" endorsed by IBANYS. These included expanding relief from Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) mandates, providing automatic Qualified Mortgage status for community bank portfolio loans, easing escrow and appraisal requirements for community bank portfolio lenders, addressing needed reciprocal deposit reform, and repealing onerous new small-business-loan-data collection requirements for small financial institutions. He also noted that, like thousands of other community banks across the country, Tioga State Bank provides services that can't be duplicated by banks that operate from outside the community. After the hearing , Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-Central New York) commented Tioga State Bank " has played a major role in providing local businesses & consumers with credit, helping them to achieve financial independence." 

ICBA and IBANYS want Congress to advance the CLEAR Relief Act (H.R. 2133), the Financial Institutions Due Process Act (H.R. 924), the Clarifying Commercial Real Estate Loans Act (H.R. 2148) and the Access to Affordable Mortgages Act. See below.

Ask Your Representatives To Support
The CLEAR Relief ACT
IBANYS and the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) are working to advance the CLEAR Relief Act , which would provide community banks in our state meaningful regulatory relief. H.R. 2133 (Luetkemeyer) and S. 1002 (Moran, Tester) include many provisions from ICBA's "Plan for Prosperity" regulatory relief program that IBANYS has strongly endorsed. If enacted, the CLEAR Act will allow community banks to better promote and support entrepreneurship, job creation, homeownership and economic growth in New York's local communities. To support this effort, we need you to send a letter to members of Congress 1) thanking sponsors of this legislation, and 2) encouraging non-co-sponsors to sponsor and support this legislation.  ICBA has set up a pre-written action alert (see below) that you can use to send your messages . IBANYS encourages New York community banks to customize the letter, and talk specifically about your bank and community. You can reference specific statistics on community banks by state and congressional district through the ICBA's Community Bank Footprint page:  https://www.icba.org/advocacy/ grassroots-be-heard!/advocacy-toolbox/state-and-congressional-district-community-bank-footprint Thank you for doing your part to help advance regulatory relief and support the passage of the CLEAR Relief Act!
Tax Reform Can Strengthen Communities, 
Boost Economic Growth
ICBA wrote to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Hatch (R-UT) and Ranking Democrat Wyden (D-OR) to focus on community banks' plan to strengthen communities, promote local economic growth and spur job creation through an improved tax code. They noted community banks' strong performance with small businesses, farmers & ranchers, and expressed industry concern over the impact on these borrowers that would result from eliminating or limiting the interest deduction. Community bank credit is essential to small business borrowers -- and often, their only source of capital. ICBA advocated for a number of provisions in its Plan for Prosperity (endorsed by IBANYS). Those include: expanding access to credit with tax incentives for targeted community bank lending; repealing the estate tax; seeking tax parity with credit unions and farm credit lenders; opposing new commercial bank taxes, and strengthening the Subchapter S business model by increasing the number of shareholders, allowing for IRA shareholders, and allowing preferred stock.

Invite Your Congressional Representatives 
To Visit Your Bank During August
There are just three more weeks until the August Congressional recess. Members of Congress will return to their districts to meet with constituents. IBANYS joins ICBA in urging New York community bankers to invite your local Representatives (and their staff) to visit your banks during August to witness first hand  the challenges community banks face in today's regulatory environment. Help them to understand the very real need to find solutions to regulatory overreach, which limits your ability to serve your local customers and communities. Remind them of the impact and importance of community banking in their districts.  ICBA has developed a "Meeting on Main Street" guide to  help with planning and logistics for bank visits/in-district meetings.  T ake another step toward meaningful community bank regulatory relief. Questions? ICBA's Joshua Habursky can help. Joshua.habursky@icba.org, (202)821-4355

In other updates from Washington:
  • ICBA is supporting Amodei Amendment that would transition the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) from a single-Director governing structure to a five-person bipartisan committee structure. Meanwhile, House Financial Services Chairmen Hensarling said that current CFPB Director Cordray should resign if he is planning to end his term early to run for governor of Ohio. Cordray's term expires next July.
  • Senate Banking Committee leaders released a bipartisan bill to keep the federal flood insurance program funded for six years and create new risk mitigation procedures for communities to follow. Chairman Crapo (R-Idaho) and ranking Democrat Brown (D-Ohio) said the bill would serve as a template for consideration by the whole committee, and could likely be amended. 
  • The FDIC moved forward with a proposed rule to raise the dollar amount at which appraisals are required for commercial real estate transactions. The threshold will be raised from $250,000 to $400,000. Community banks including through the ICBA had advocated for an increase. 
  • James Clinger, President Trump's nominee for FDIC Chairman, has withdrawn from consideration for family reasons.

Manufacturing Growth In New York Slows
Manufacturing in New York state grew for a second month in July -- but at a much slower pace. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York's Empire State manufacturing index dropped to 9.8 from 19.8 in June. Both new orders and shipments slipped.  July's decline follows the New York Fed's index having reached a two-year high in June. A measure of new orders dropped from 18.1 to 13.3, and a gauge of shipments dropped from 22.3 to 10.5. Hiring also slowed sharply. The index, which measures sentiment among New York firms, is closely followed by economists because it provides an early read on factory output nationwide.

Mortgage Updates. . .
Total mortgage application volume rose 6.3% for the week from the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's seasonally housing money adjusted index. Volume remains 31% lower than a year ago, when interest rates were lower. Refinance applications increased 13% last week, even as mortgage rates remained steady, The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances of $424,100 or less remained unchanged at 4.22%, with points decreasing to 0.31 from 0.40, including the origination fee, for 80% loan-to-value-ratio loans. Mortgage applications to purchase a home increased 1% from a week earlier and were 7%  higher than a year ago.

. . .Latest On Housing Starts
The U.S. Commerce Department said today that housing starts jumped 8.3% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.22 million units, the highest level since February. Both single-family and multi-family construction increased. Single-family homebuilding, which accounts for the largest share of the residential housing market, surged 6.3% nationally, and increased 9.3% in the Northeast. Nationally,  May's sales pace was revised up to 1.12 million units from the previously reported 1.09 million units.  Economists polled by Reuters had forecast groundbreaking activity rising to a rate of 1.16 million units last month. Homebuilding rose 2.1% on a year-on-year basis.

Have You Contributed To NYSIBPAC?
This year brings a challenging legislative session, with new chairmen of both the State Senate and State Assembly Banks Committees. Many of our competitors within the financial services industry operate very well-funded political action committees, and we need your support to ensure community banks remain an important part of the political process and debate. We have placed an updated 2017 NYSIBPAC contribution form in the column along the left border of this newsletter.  Can we count on your support?


IBANYS identifies offers products and services  that provide value to your banks, companies, employees communities. These brief summaries provide links for information. Please contact IBANYS President John Witkowski with questions. 

Health & Wellness 
The health and wellness landscape continues to evolve. "My Wellness Resource" can be a nice addition to your existing benefit package.   C ontact Alan Justin at (716) 907-5500  or visit:  http://nbibanys.phecard.com.

We are pleased to inform HR & Benefits Representatives of IBANYS member banks about a new offer available to their banks.  Offered through IBANYS' partner at My Wellness Resource is a unique program providing a $500 rebate on any new Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram or Hyundai vehicle. Those firms comprise approximately 19% of all car and truck sales in the US market.  The rebate is independent of, and may be combined with, any other offer available to your employees, so it's a true cash rebate that is not available through dealerships. Employees negotiate their best deal at the dealership of their choice including other rebates, cash back offers, etc., then apply for and receive this $500 rebate after their new car purchase or lease. The program may only be  offered though individual banks, not through IBANYS itself. Therefore, if it's something you think your bank and employees might be interested in, drop a line to us and we will forward it to our contact at My Wellness, Alan Justin, who will reach out to you with  the details.

We only ask that if you are not currently participating in the My Wellness Resource program, that you take a fair & objective look at the program!

Secure, Enhanced Internet Presence
The .bank program by fTLD operates trusted, verified, more secure, easily-identifiable internet locations for financial companies and their customers. V isit  www.icba.org/SRPArticles < http://www.icba.org/SRPArticles > page  

Online Lending
Excelsior Growth Fund (EGF) is NYBDC's nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution and IBANYS' exclusive online lending  partner . Visit 

Battle Against Prostate Cancer
Cure the Blue" raises funds and awareness regarding prostate cancer in New York State. Visit www.curetheblue.com to get involved!  

IBANYS Webinars  For  New York 
Community Banks:
. . .Is YOUR Bank Participating? 
New York's community banks face an array of challenges -- and, opportunities! Bank officers, board members and employees need to stay fully informed and up-to-date. . . on their responsibilities -- and, their potential liabilities. Community bankers need the proper information and tools to effectively do so, and to execute their business and strategic plan to prepare for the future.  Here's one important, convenient way to do this:  IBANYS' 2017 webinars. These presentations are designed to meet the needs of New York community banks. The programs are both effective and cost-effective. . . and participating couldn't be easier! Community bankers can do so from their own offices. The number of participants has dramatically increased over the past few years. Is your bank among those who have benefited?  If not, find out why so many of  your industry and association peers are taking advantage of these webinars. R eview upcoming programs link below:

. . .Accume Partners
Banks and financial institutions today face enormous pressure from both internal and external forces. They include increased regulation, economic issues, competition, technology, security and risk. Accume Partners has helped banks and financial institutions successfully navigate this constantly changing landscape.  Banks and financial institutions have been a foundation of Accume's business since its founding. From start up de-novo institutions looking to grow, to more complex multi-billion dollar institutions looking for a higher level of expertise, Accume provides a full range of services. Accume has become a leading provider of professional services because of the firm's knowledgeable, thorough and responsive team approach that fully leverages the combined experience ofits professionals to solve clients' issues.  Through all their services, Accume Partners helps financial institutions:
  • Mitigate risks
  • Enhance the overall control environment
  • Achieve compliance with the latest rules, regulations and pronouncements
  • Improve overall operational efficiency
Accume has distinguished itself in serving financial institutions by using a proprietary top-down, risk-based approach that creates value-added solutions for clients. 

For more information, call  1-888-696-1515, or visit the website at www.accumepartners.com.

. . .That the  1934 Federal Credit Union Act required them to limit their membership to ''groups having a common bond of occupation or association'' or to groups within a particular community? However, in 1982 the National Credit Union Administration issued a new interpretation under which a credit union could include unrelated groups, as long as each group was defined by its own common bond!


 New York community banks play a key role in our state and local economies. Help spread the good news among your customers, business and elected leaders and media!


Click here for quotes from Governor Cuomo and former DFS Superintendent Lawsky extolling the performance and value of New York community banks.

Click here for the full NYS Study on community banking.

Click here to read IBANYS President & CEO John Witkowski's comments on the new tax changes and benefits for New York community banks as approved in the 2014-15 State Budget.


Click here for IBANYS' letter to the Editor of Consumer Reports Magazine correcting failure to mention community banks as an alternative to using "big banks."


John J. Witkowski
President and Chief Executive Officer
Stephen W. Rice
Director of Government Relations and Communications

Linda Gregware
Director of Administration and Membership Services 

William Y. Crowell, III
Legislative Counsel