Your IBANYS Team: 
Working Together To Make 2016 A Great Year 
For New York C ommun ity Banks !
In This Issue

Quick Links

Have You Contributed to NYSIBPAC This Year?
If 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?
CLICK HERE for our 2016 PAC contribution form. Help support IBANYS' political action efforts in New York State.


October 12, 2016


IBANYS' Regional 
Cybersecurity Conferences: Oct. 19 - 20

CLICK HERE to register & View Program 

Why should your bank attend next week's IBANYS Regional Security Conferences? As evidenced by the new proposed regulation by the New York State Department of Financial Services, state and federal financial regulators view cyber security as among the most important issues and challenges facing community banks. Your  officers, employees, directors - anyone responsible for/involved with your system security - must be up-to-speed on these issues, which are rapidly evolving. The proposed State DFS reg would require financial services institutions regulated by the DFS to: 
  • Establish a cybersecurity program; 
  • Adopt a written cybersecurity policy;
  • Designate a Chief Information Security Officer responsible for implementing, overseeing and enforcing its new program and policy
  • Have policies and procedures designed to ensure the security of information systems and nonpublic information accessible to, or held by, third-parties, along with a variety of other requirements to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of information systems. 
  • Click here to register for IBANYS Security Conference
New York Community Bankers: 
Next week, plan to attend  IBANYS' Regional Security
Conferences  Oct. 19 - 20  in  Rochester and the  Capital District. Presentations will feature some very dynamic speakers, including a group who presented to our new IBANYS' Innovation Committee at our Annual Convention last week. The sessions will examine the latest trends and developments impacting community banks: 
  • "Vulnerability & Penetration Testing: What You Need To Know" 
  • "Why The Board Can't be Bored With Cybersecurity",
  • "Cloud Computing: Is It Safe For Your Institution & Your Customers?"
  • "Proven Tips For Mitigating Your Top 10 Cyberthreats"
  • "Cybersecurity Risk Assessment - Are You Ready?"
Register here today!


A note from President & CEO John Witkowski:

I want to thank all who attended our highly successful IBANYS' Annual Convention last week. We attracted some 185 participants,  as well as 35 booths in the business show. Our business sessions included top-notch speakers of national repute, and we featured unique networking and recreational opportunities, great camaraderie. . .and "a little bit of fun" as well. We're looking forward to making it happen all over again in 2017! Meanwhile, here are a few more pictures from this year's signature event of the year for New York community banks.

IBANYS Chairman-Elect Doug Manditch
Outgoing IBANYS Chairman John Buhrmaster

Keynote Speakers Steve Greenberg & Ray O'Conor

. . .A full house for convention business session

"Every Day Steps Towards Online Safety with Stop.Think.Connect."
October 2016 marks the 13th year of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) -- created as a collaborative effort between government and industry to ensure that all digital citizens have the resources they need to stay safer, more secure and better able to protect their personal information online.  Each week during October is dedicated to a specific cyber security theme offering the opportunity to get involved in activities most relevant to them. 
  •  Week 1 (October 3 - 7): Every Day Steps Towards Online Safety with Stop.Think.Connect.™ (
  • Week 2 (October 10 - 14): Cyber from the Break Room to the Board Room 
  • Week 3 (October 17 - 21): Recognizing and Combating Cybercrime
  • Week 4 (October 24 - 28): Our Continuously Connected Lives: What's Your 'App'-titude?
  • Week 5 (October 31): Building Resilience in Critical Infrastructure 
In celebration of NCSAM, the
New York State Office of Information Technology Services (ITS) is joining with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and its public and private partners to help raise awareness about the importance of cyber security. 
Throughout the month, ITS will highlight activities and actions that you can take to stay safe and secure while online.
For week 1 of NCSAM, STOP. THINK. CONNECT. is the simple, actionable advice anyone can follow.
STOP: make sure security measures are in place.
THINK: about the consequences of your actions and behaviors online.
CONNECT: and enjoy the Internet.  
Whether banking, shopping, social networking, tracking our health or downloading the latest app, in today's interconnected world, practicing good cyber security is critical. A cyber tips sheet from STOP.THINK.CONNECT is available by visiting:
For further information and resources, please visit the ITS 2016 Cyber Security Awareness Month page:, follow on Twitter at @NYStateCIO, and on Facebook at  
New Leaders In Banking Award 
& Conference 

The Independent Bankers Association of New York State (IBANYS) and Banking New York magazine want your help identifying outstanding banking professionals.  Financial professionals are commonly recognized for generating significant revenue. We're looking for those who think beyond the bottom line and regularly "go the extra mile". 
  • Are you a banking professional who wants to recognize a peer? 
  • Are you a manager who wants to congratulate an employee for always going the extra mile? 
  • This is your chance to make a submission for a New Leaders in Banking award.  
Winners will be honored during the Banking New York Conference on December 14th in Albany, New York. Please join us and enjoy a day recognizing New Leaders in Banking, networking with peers, learning about new products and services to strengthen your institution, and hearing from industry thought leaders during numerous motivating and educational sessions. 

To nominate someone, visit: and then click on the New Leaders Nominations tab on top.

Questions? E-mail, or call  
(617) 896-5373.

Government Relations

There are two important updates on developments and activities at the federal level that have an impact on community banks. One is from the regulatory front, and another is from the judiciary but impacts the regulatory front.
Federal Court: CFPB's Single Director Governance "Unconstitutional"
A federal appeals court has ruled that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB's)v single-director structure is unconstitutional, and gave the president more power over the head of the agency. In PHH v. CFPB, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit said the agency concentrates "enormous executive power" in a director who cannot be removed except "for cause" and noted that while other agency heads serve at the pleasure of the president or lead boards of directors, in this case the CFPB Director is unaccountable and may regulate arbitrarily. As a result, the court struck the "for cause" provision in the Dodd-Frank Act, allowing the president to dismiss the CFPB director at will. ICBA and IBANYS have strongly supported and advocated for replacing the single director governance at CFPB with a five-member commission -- as defined in the "Plan for Prosperity" that has passed the House. A CFPB spokesperson  stated: "The Bureau believes that Congress's decision to make the director removable only for cause is consistent with Supreme Court precedent and the bureau is considering options for seeking further review of the court's decision." 
Comment Letters Needed By Friday On 
Meaningful Call Report Relief
IBANYS is joining ICBA in asking New York community banks to submit comment letters -- by this Friday's deadline -- to advance "meaningful" call report relief in this action alert:
With comments due this Friday on proposed reforms to the call report, please submit a comment letter urging the banking agencies to advance more substantial relief.

As a community banker, you know what a tremendous burden the call report represents to community banks and how meaningful reform is necessary. The agencies' proposed regulatory changes are simply insufficient.

In addition to submitting comments through ICBA's Be Heard grassroots website (, ICBA also encourages community bank advocates to provide original comments to the OCC at, the Federal Reserve at
 and the FDIC at

By urging regulators to implement a truly streamlined call report that will provide sufficient data without overburdening community banks, you can help make a positive impact on the regulatory mandates facing your bank and others across the nation. Please act today!

Three Proposed DFS Regs Would 
Impact Community Banks

DFS To Banks: Monitor  
Incentive Comp Practices

Governor Cuomo has announced a new guidance instructing banks to monitor incentive compensation practices.  The guidance directs "all state regulated banks to ensure any employee incentive arrangements do not encourage inappropriate corporate practices." The press release announcing the guidance notes this "precautionary measure follows a record $100 million fine and other penalties levied against Wells Fargo Bank by the federal government for programs that encouraged employees to boost sales figures by engaging in this type of behavior." The Governor stated:  "The inappropriate behavior we have seen at institutions like Wells Fargo are the same ones that led to the 2007 financial crisis and there must be zero tolerance for reckless policies that foster greed and put New Yorkers' financial futures at risk . State charters banks are now on notice of their obligations and it is their responsibility to ensure their employees are acting in the best interests of their customers." DFS Superintendent Vullo added, " "DFS will take swift enforcement action against financial institutions with misaligned incentive compensation schemes that foster improper behavior among their employees. Board members and executive staff at regulated banks are responsible for making certain that sufficient controls are in place to safeguard against the inherent risks and conflicts of interest associated with cross-selling and referral bonus arrangements." To read the full press release, click on the link below, or cut and paste it into your browser.

Proposed DFS Regs On 
Cyber Security & Zombie Properties 

The State Department of Financial Services has
proposed a cyber security regulation, and   IBANYS has been working with members of the Government Relations Committee, involved bank employees and ICBA as we prepare our comment letter. The proposal would require banks and other financial services institutions regulated by the DFS to: 
  • Establish a cybersecurity program; 
  • Adopt a written cybersecurity policy; 
  • Designate a Chief Information Security Officer responsible for implementing, overseeing and enforcing its new program and policy;
  • Have policies and procedures designed to ensure the security of information systems and nonpublic information accessible to, or held by, third-parties
It also includes a variety of other requirements to "protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of information systems."

DFS has also proposed a "zombie properties" regulation that  mandates that banks and mortgage services report vacant and abandoned properties in accordance with the new law , which was signed in June.The proposal is subject to a 45-day notice and public comment period following the October 12, 2016 publication in the State register before final issuance. The law takes effect this December 20, and addresses "zombie properties" by: 
  • expediting foreclosure proceedings
  • improving the efficiency and integrity of the mandatory settlement conferences, and 
  • obligating banks and mortgage servicers to secure, protect and maintain vacant and abandoned properties before and during foreclosure proceedings. 
IBANYS worked hard to protect the interests of community banks in the process. We succeeded in inserting "carve outs" that exempt the vast majority of community banks based on a formula of their percentage of one-to-four family mortgage loans, compared to the total number of such loans in New York State. 


CFPB: Largest Credit Union Must Pay For 
Debt Collection Practices

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has  ordered the Navy Federal Credit Union (the nation's largest credit union, with over $77.8 billion in assets as of June 30)  to pay $28.5 million in restitution and fines to settle civil charges alleging it made "false threats" about debt collection to its members. The CFPB said the credit union moved to "unfairly" restrict access when its customers had a delinquent loan. The credit union sent letters to some of members threatening legal action if they did not pay - a threat that rarely materialized. Some letters threatened to garnish consumers' wages (a remedy only available through a court order), made false threats, (i.e., telling customers they would "find it difficult, if not impossible, to obtain additional credit" because of their "unsatisfactory credit rating" with the credit union.) 
The credit union settled the charges without admitting or denying wrongdoing and  said it is "proud of its 83-year history" of helping members fulfill financial goals.

Fed Official Warns About Cyber Threats

Kansas City Federal Reserve President Esther George said that c ybersecurity threats are growing quickly for the payment networks of the U.S. financial system, and  warned the growing threats were undermining public confidence in the system. She noted c ybercriminals have hacked into major U.S. banks, and have stolen $81 million from an account at the New York Fed by hacking into SWIFT, an international payments network, addi:  "We must keep pace with the rapidly evolving and expanding risks that threaten the payments ecosystem."  She also noted  proposals would likely be released in 2017 from two task forces (which include private and public officials) seeking to make the U.S. payments system faster and more secure.

Meanwhile, New York Fed President Bill Dudley said today U.S.  inflation expectations seem to be "well-anchored" and that "slack" in labor markets is a reason behind the central bank's continuing easy monetary policy.  The latest employment report showed non-farm payrolls increased by 156,000 in September, and the unemployment rate rose to 5%. Dudley noted:  "The best thing that could happen for the U.S. economy (is) to grow at a moderate rate for the next five to 10 years and the unemployment rate to stay around 5% or lower..., I think we're at a point where the economic expansion has plenty of room to run."


These IBANYS Programs
Benefit New York Community Banks

IBANYS has introduced several initiatives which can provide real value and bottom line benefits to New York community banks. Take a moment to review these programs. If you have any questions, contact us, or visit  We hope you'll decide to take full advantage of these exciting opportunities.

ICBA & Dell Offering 
Member Banks Preferred Pricing 

Do you know that the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) and Dell Computers have an agreement in place that  allows community banks that belong to ICBA to take advantage of
preferred pricing on computer equipment such as work stations, servers and laptops?
Participating banks will also have access to a dedicated account executive familiar with ICBA's program to advocate for them with appropriate Dell teams, including technical experts.  To check the October 2016 specials  Click here 

 .BANK Toolkit & Digital Campaign

IBANYS encourages New York community banks to take a look at  a digital campaign that fTLD has put together to raise the visibility of .BANK in the marketplace.  ICBA asked us to pass along this opportunity for banks to join in with ICBA, ABA and the Financial Services Roundtable to promote .BANK. To view the campaign, view the toolkit and read nine different ads available for use, click on the link below, or cut and paste it into your browser.
  • IBANYS and NYBDC have announced a partnership with Excelsior Growth Fund (EGF), a nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution formed by New York Business Development Corporation (NYBDC). EGF is endorsed by IBANYS as the exclusive online lending partner for association members.  EGF provides innovative financial solutions and business advisory services to underserved small businesses in New York State through a fast, simple and secure online lending platform. Its core product is the EGF SmartLoan™, which features amounts up to $100,000, approvals within 1-2 days and disbursements within one week. Importantly, interest rates a fraction of those typically offered by online lenders.  EGF offers banks a unique customer retention solution when a customer either does not qualify for a bank's loan offerings, or is seeking the fast,   transparent process available through online lenders. To facilitate retention, EGF shares performance information on the referred loan portfolio on a quarterly basis and offers the opportunity for the bank to purchase referred loans at par at any time.  Additional details on the EGF SmartLoan, including eligibility criteria, are available at:

    For details, or to make a referral, contact Bryan Doxford, Chief Lending Officer at Excelsior Growth Fund: or  (212) 430-4512.
  • The "My Wellness Resource Card" offers a low-cost, non-traditional program to help community banks to save time and money. It helps provide on demand health care from U.S. board-certified doctors who provide diagnosis, treatment options and necessary prescriptions via unlimited telephone medical consultations. The My Wellness program offers discounts and significant savings on a variety of medical and dental products, and is designed to improve productivity, decrease absenteeism and boost morale without straining your bottom line. It's an exciting new way for community banks to provide health care benefits, reduce cost and retain employees. For more information, contact Alan Justin, Managing Partner at (716) 907-5500. 
  • We also joined the "Cure the Blue" effort to raise funds and awareness regarding prostate cancer in New York State. We are partnering with the Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation, and hope to see a number of IBANYS members participate. Please join us in supporting this worthwhile cause. Visit to get involved! 

IBANYS Webinars For 
New York Community Banks 

New York's community banks face a wide range of challenges. Officers, board members and employees need to understand their responsibilities -- and, potential liabilities -- are not about to diminish. They require the information and tools required to meet their responsibilities, and properly prepare the bank for the future.  One way to assure this is to participate in  IBANYS' webinars -- tailored to the needs of New York community banks. The programs are both effective and cost-effective, and couldn't be more convenient! Community banks' officers, directors and employees participate directly from their offices. Over the past two years, the number of bankers participating in IBANYS webinars has risen dramatically increased.  Find out why. Join  your industry and association peers and take full advantage of these timely webinars.  Review  our upcoming programs by clicking the link below:

. . .Security Management Partners

Founded in 2001,
Security Management Partners (SMP) 
is a leading, full-service IT assurance firm, specializing in information security audits, assessments and regulatory compliance consulting to the  corporate world, including financial industries
Security Management Partners offers compliance audit and assessment services for financial institutions under Gramm-Leach-Bliley (GLBA), Red Flag,  MA 201 CMR 17, and FFIEC guidelines which require that financial institutions establish an effective information security program to protect the confidentiality and security of nonpublic personal customer information or be subject to substantial monetary and legal penalties. SMP is familiar with all of the regulatory agencies that oversee financial institutions including: Federal Reserve System (FRB); Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC); National Credit Union Administration (NCUA); Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC); and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).  SMP's IT audit and assessment services cover key components in the creation and maintenance of a comprehensive information security program. With SMP's help, financial institutions can be confident that they have taken reasonable measures to protect confidential information and have reduced potential liabilities.  
SMP also offers additional  consulting services for the finance industry. SMP is known as a trusted advisor who helps identify threats and vulnerabilities, quantify risk and provide risk mitigation strategies for your information assets. Let them show you why hundreds of businesses like yours have made SMP their provider of choice for more than a decade, and how SMP can help your organization improve and better manage its IT security, policies, practices, and processes. 

Visit, or  contact  Joan Cappadona : (781) 890-7671 ext. 214;




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 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