• Bob Fisher Testifies Before House On Reg Relief
  • IBANYS To Launch New Social Media Presence!
  • Check Out IBANYS' New CEO Forums!
  • Latest Updates From Albany & Washington
  • ICBA/Travelers Major Dividend For Community Banks
  • New 2018 NYSIBAC Contribution Brochure
  • 2018 Committees Need Your Participation
  • Have you visited our newly updated website at www.ibanys.net yet?

Your IBANYS Team: 
Working To Make 2018 Another Great Year 
For New York's 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.


January 10, 2018

Two New IBANYS Initiatives!

I want to share with you some exciting news about two new IBANYS initiatives for 2018. 
  • One of the most important is an easier way to communicate thru Social Media. IBANYS will have accounts in Facebook, Twitter and Instagram beginning at the end of January. Natalie Rowan, IBANYS specialist on social media, will be working with the distribution of important information thru social media.
  • Another important initiative will be our "CEO Forums" scheduled for March 26th in Albany, March 27th in Syracuse and March 28th in Rochester/ Buffalo market. It seems that after every IBANYS event, I hear one consistent message from CEOs: They would like more time to network and discuss the important issues that are impacting their bank and community. I am looking forward to providing the forum for these discussions, and having Karl Nelson of KPN Consulting to serve as moderator.  Topics of discussion will be based on a survey of CEO's prior to each meeting.
  • Thank you Bob Fisher, President and CEO of Tioga State Bank, for making your (and our) presence known in Washington, D.C. by testifying on establishing an efficient regulatory regime for community banks in front of the House Financial Services Committee's Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit
Please see more details on each of these subjects later on in this newsletter.

-- John

Get Ready For IBANYS' 
New  Social Media Presence
Looking for an easier way to stay connected on everything IBANYS? That is now possible through our social platforms!  IBANYS is currently in the process of developing and launching its social media presence through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. All three accounts will be active at the end of January and provide direct communication with our followers.  These three platforms make IBANYS "virtually accessible" to individuals and organizations, and will provide a way to receive IBANYS news faster than ever before.  Each of our posts is tailored to the platform(s) that best communicate our message and instantly notifies our followers when a new post is added. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all offer notification features that can alert you on any device when an update is made to that platform. 
  • New event page created on Facebook? You can immediately add it to your calendar. 
  • Policy update from Washington? Twitter can instantly give you the insight into it. 
  • New brochure for one of our conferences? Get all the information for it on Instagram.
Another great aspect of our social media accounts is that you can share our posts or provide your comment and thoughts. 
  • Let other businesses know about our events
  • Share an idea for a new topic at a conference 
  • Or, just start a conversation with us! 
The possibilities are endless.  With the integration of social media, IBANYS looks forward to expanding communication with various individuals and organizations and keeping all our followers up-to-date on all IBANYS news. Be sure to keep an eye out for our social media accounts at the end of January and follow them! 
  • Facebook: @ibanys1 
  • Twitter: @ibanys1  
  • Instagram: @ibanys1 
If you have questions, please  contact our Marketing and Social Media Assistant Natalie Rowan:  natalier@ibanys.net or at (518) 436-4646.

IBANYS Launching New CEO Forums
In operating a business, utilization of various resources is common to keep an organization on the road to success. For CEOs, this is especially true as every move made can impact not only your organization, but your community.  IBANYS'  CEO Forum is the perfect event for executives to share and learn about new topics, ideas, and resources that can help them and their organization succeed.  The CEO Forum will take place twice a year, from 8:30 AM-3:00 PM. The first round is scheduled for March 26th in Albany, March 27th in Syracuse and March 28th in Rochester/Buffalo market. Each will be capped at 15 participants. Topics at the forum can range from profitability strategies to regulatory updates. New topics will be discussed at each meeting, based on suggestions from past participants. 

By attending the CEO Forum, you will gain many benefits, such as: 
  • Learning what's working and what's not
  • Forming long lasting relationships with other CEO's
  • Solving your immediate concerns
  • Obtaining access to highly respected industry experts
  • Discovering new solutions your peers are utilizing
There is nothing to lose, and everything to gain by attending IBANYS' CEO Forums. Come and meet other CEO's and join together for the common goal on making our banks thrive! Look for more details soon!

. . .Please Support NYSIBPAC. . .
Here's an important update! IBANYS' 2018 PAC Contribution Brochure  is now available. By donating to NYSIBPAC, our state political action committee, you demonstrate your support for community banks. Funds help the campaigns of individuals that not only support community-based banking, but want to work to improve the business environment for independent banks in New York. Contributions to NYSIBPAC are used to support the election campaigns of individuals who support communitybased banking and who share an interest in improving the business climate for independent banks in New York. The distribution of funds from NYSIBPAC is limited to candidates for New York State offices. Every statewide official and all seats in the NYS Legislature will be on the ballot next November. Please click the link above and support NYSIBPAC.


Mark Your Calendars For These IBANYS' 
2018 Meetings. . .  
Please review this convenient IBANYS 2018 Calendar showing the dates and locations of all our 2018 IBANYS meetings.  Member banks: Please share with your senior management team, key officers and personnel and directors. Preferred providers, associate members and business show exhibitors: Plan early to attend, participate, sponsor and/or exhibit.

Please Note: Busy March Ahead!
Our first 2018 meetings are in March, with our  Regional Compliance Conferences  scheduled for Rochester/Pittsford March  20 & Troy March 21, and then our new CEO Forums March 26 in Albany, March 27 in Syracuse & March 28 in Rochester/Buffalo market. Watch for more details! 

Please note important change:
The dates for the 2018 ICBA Capital Summit at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Washington, DC have changed to  Sunday, April 8 - Wednesday, April 11, 2018 . IBANYS will be scheduling our "hill visits" with the members of our New York congressional delegation (House and Senate) for Tuesday, April 10 and Wednesday, April 11.

. . .Sign Up Today! 
IBANYS committees play a vital role in reviewing and formulating legislative and regulatory policy,  designing educational programs,
p roviding opportunities for peer networking and dialogue. . . and  recommending new, innovative products and services to benefit New York's community banks. Contact  John Witkowski and/or Linda Gregware (Johnw@IBANYS.net, Lindag@IBANYS.net) and let them know which committees interest your bank:
  • Government Relations Committee 
  • CFO/Senior Management Peer Group 
  • Compliance Peer Group 
  • Security Committee
  • Our new HR and Operations Committee 
  • Innovation Committee
Governor Signs Online Lending Task Force Bill -- With An Asterisk
Governor Cuomo has A.8260 (Zebrowski)/ S.6593A (Hamilton), legislation that would create a Task Force on Online Lending.  However, his approval is conditional on an agreement with the Legislature to "pass legislation in the upcoming session to require the Department of Financial Services (DFS) to continue studying this industry and issue a summary report by July 1, 2018. That report would include recommendations on: licensure; products and services; disclosure and lending practices, and interest rates and fees by online lending institutions already operating in New York. It would also determine if regulations were necessary to "curb predatory practices."

Albany Focus On Taxes, Deficit 
NYS Senate Republicans are proposing tax cuts as part of their 2018 agenda, including cutting energy taxes by $280 million, increasing property tax rebate checks and freezing school property taxes for seniors. Senate GOP Leader John Flanagan (R-L.I.) noted that is  in addition to an already-passed middle-income tax cut that took effect Jan. 1 and is expected to save New Yorkers $4.2 billion a year once it's fully rolled out. He also noted there is no support for  the adoption of a statewide payroll tax suggested by Gov. Cuomo last week as a potential way of working around the $10,000 cap on state and local tax deductions contained in the federal tax law.  New York is facing a state budget shortfall with estimates ranging from $1.7 billion to   $4.4 billion  -- and in some instances up to  $6.8 billion Gov. Cuomo has been using a flat $4 billion figure, and citing $2 billion more in federal health care cuts. However, if the state keeps overall spending increases at 2%, this year's shortfall would be an estimated $1.7 billion, according to the administration's projections.

Vacant Seats In State Legislature
There are currently 11 vacant seats in the State Legislature -- nine in the Assembly and two in the Senate - due to legislators leaving office after being elected to different positions. Tuesday's indictment of Assemblywoman Pamela Harris and her potential resignation could increase the number of vacant seats to 12. Nearly 1.8 million New Yorkers are unrepresented. Gov. Cuomo has not yet scheduled special elections to fill the seats. The 2018 election calendar calls for the federal primary June 26, state and local primary Sept. 11 and general election for all federal, state and local races Nov. 6.
New York's Bob Fisher Testifies On 
Reg Relief  In Washington
Bob Fisher (l.) with Subcommittee Chair Luetkemeyer (R-MO)
IBANYS Director and former Chairman Bob Fisher (President and CEO, Tioga State Bank) testified yesterday before the House Financial Services Committee's Subcommittee on BobFisher Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit. Click here to read his full testimony.fifth-generation community banker who  chairs ICBA's Policy Development Committee, he spoke  on behalf of legislation to establish a more efficient financial regulatory regime and expressed ICBA's support for several bills to promote tiered and proportionate community banking regulations that will strengthen local economic growth and job creation.  "Community banks didn't cause the financial crisis, and we should not bear the weight of overreaching regulation intended to address it," Fisher said. "ICBA is strongly encouraged by recent, bipartisan momentum for community bank regulatory relief from both sides of the Capitol, and we are optimistic that meaningful relief will soon be signed into law." He  advocated the following bills, which include provisions recommended in ICBA's pro-growth Plan for Prosperity regulatory relief platform strongly supported by IBANYS.
  • The Community Financial Institution Exemption Act (H.R. 1264), which would exempt community banks with less than $50 billion in assets from all prospective rules and regulations issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
  • The Home Mortgage Reporting Relief Act of 2017 (H.R. 4648), which would provide temporary enforcement relief from new Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data collection and reporting requirements and restrict the CFPB's ability to make the new data publicly available.
  • The Community Bank Reporting Relief Act (H.R. 4725), which would provide for short-form call reports in the first and third quarters for banks with assets of less than $5 billion.
  • The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155), bipartisan legislation that has passed the Senate Banking Committee on a bipartisan vote and which would provide robust community bank regulatory relief to strengthen economic growth and job creation.
New York community bankers: Continue to urge lawmakers to take up and pass the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155) via ICBA's "Be Heard" grassroots action center. Visit www.icba.org.

Other News From Washington:

New York Representatives: Restore 
The SALT Deduction
Rep.  Pete King (R-L.I.)), teamed up with Rep.  Nita Lowey (D-Westchester)) to introduce legislation Rep King this week to restore the full state and local tax (SALT) deduction.  Rep.  John Faso  (R-Hudson Valley) said he's interested in those efforts as well.
"I'm going to talk to my colleagues, and I think it's important for us to stake a principle from the standpoint of federalism that the federal government should not subject the amounts of money you pay to your state and locality to taxation as well," Faso said.
  • House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) wants President Trump to nominate J. Mark McWatters to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. McWatters, a former Hensarling aide who's now chairman of the National Credit Union Administration, has been a critic of the CFPB's oversight of credit unions.
  • In a comment letter to the federal banking agencies and Financial Accounting Standards Board, ICBA expressed concerns about the impact of tax reform on community bank deferred tax assets for 2017. ICBA asked that the tax impact of accumulated other comprehensive income due to changes in the effective tax rate not be reported in earnings.
  • ICBA also asked that the bank regulators segregate the adverse impact of any regulatory capital changes from tax reform when measuring capital adequacy for the current call report date. This letter follows a conference call that banking agencies and their chief accountants had with ICBA concerning the impact of tax reform on community bank balance sheets.
  • Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Doug Jones (D-AL) have been named to the U.S. Senate Banking Committee. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) is the newest member of the Senate Finance Committee. 
  • Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), a longtime member of the House Financial Services Committee, will not seek a 14th term in Congress.  
ICBA Tax Reform Scorecard
For a details on how the new federal tax changes could impact community banks, the 
ICBA tax reform scorecard for community banks summarizes the new tax law's favorable outcomes as well as remaining tax challenges. The law includes ICBA-advocated tax relief and numerous improvements benefiting community banks, such as a small-business carveout from limits on the business interest deduction and enhanced treatment of Subchapter S community banks.


ICBA/Travelers Announce $4 Million Dividend for Participating Community Banks
ICBA announced that nearly 1,300-member banks will share a policyholder dividend totaling more than $4 million from their participation in the ICBA/Travelers insurance program in 2016 -- the 16th consecutive dividend for ICBA members. (Note: Travelers is an IBANYS preferred provider.)  "Helping community banks protect their investment remains our top priority," said Chris Lorence, ICBA group executive vice president of member engagement and strategy. "Through our Travelers' relationship, community banks have a safety net to help cover their losses and are rewarded for effectively managing their workplace insurance exposure."  Travelers offers insurance and risk mitigation services to help community banks address a wide variety of areas including property, general liability, auto liability, umbrella, workers' compensation, mortgage holders' errors and omissions, directors' and officers' liability, financial institution bonds, professional liability, kidnap and ransom, fiduciary liability, employment practices liability, lender liability and identity fraud expense reimbursement. Additionally, the company launched Cyber AcademySM, an educational cybersecurity program to help banks learn about emerging cyber trends, pertinent cyber issues and prevention tips to help address these unique risks.  "We're proud of our partnership with ICBA and the more than $55 million in dividends we have delivered to community banks to help address their unique and evolving insurance needs for nearly 35 years," said Laura Lundin, vice president of financial institutions at Travelers. "This year's dividend rewards community banks for managing their risk and facilitates reinvestment in their local communities." 

IBANYS members: Contact Mark Horton: (800) 542-8770, www.travelers.com  or visit: 

Vining Sparks' 2018 Economic Outlook Webinar Series - 1st Quarter
Tuesday, January 16, 2016
This webinar is beneficial for Portfolio Managers, CFOs, CEOs/Presidents, is free of charge and will last 45 minutes. The speaker will be  Craig Dismuke, Executive Vice President and Chief Economist for Vining Sparks. He is responsible for the projection and publication of Vining Sparks' economic and interest rate forecasts.  The outlook for 2018 was positive ... before tax reform was enacted.  Now, economic growth is poised to accelerate close to 3% in 2018, the fastest pace of this cycle.  The consumer continues to benefit from the improving labor market and deleveraged balance sheets.  Tax reform will only further boost disposable income.  Lower marginal rates and the potential repatriation of trillions of overseas Dollars should buoy business investment. Inflation and wage growth are now both more likely to firm up in 2018, allowing the Fed to continue with their prescribed rate hike path.  The outlook is positive heading into 2018 although the risks to imbalances will inevitably increase. 

Other Industry News
  • Consumer confidence in the housing market during December was better than 12 months earlier, but weaker than in November, according to Fannie Mae's Home Purchase Sentiment Index. 
  • Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Mark Warner (D-Va.), are set Wednesday to introduce a bill that would create mandatory penalties for data breaches at credit reporting agencies. The Data Breach Prevention and Compensation Act would set mandatory fines at $100 for each consumer who has a piece of personally identifiable information compromised and another $50 for each additional piece of personal identifiable data.

IBANYS' webinars provide timely, informative sessions on important topics and issues of interest for community bankers. They are valuable not only for their content, but for their cionvenience: Participants can take part from the comfort and privacy of their offices, without leaving the bank.  Upcoming offerings include presentations on 2018 credit analysis and underwriting, IRAs, consumer debt, compliance, new accounts, call reports, programs for directors, marketing and cyber security.  Take a look at the schedule of all upcoming IBANYS webinars by clicking here

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. 

"Cure The Blue" Helps Banking Industry
Battle Prostate Cancer!
The "Cure the Blue" program sponsored by the Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation allows New Yorkers to participate in one of the most comprehensive efforts to help promote prostate cancer awareness and research in the United States. September was National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, and Lake Shore Savings Bank provided prostate cancer literature and Cure the Blue information at all eleven of its branches and their headquarters in Dunkirk. The bank also offered Cure the Blue ceramic lapel ribbon pins for a $5.00 donations to Cure the Blue to all their customers.  "We fully understand the severity of this disease and the devastating effect it can have on families" said Lake Shore Savings Bank President and CEO Dan Reininga. "Our support of the Buffalo Bills Alumni Foundation's "Cure the Blue" initiative is something that we are taking very seriously and are proud to support." Buffalo Bills Wall of Famer and Alumni Foundation President Booker Edgerson, a two time prostate cancer survivor, said the bank has been a tremendous longtime supporter, noting: "They have really stepped up to the plate with their unwavering support of our Cure the Blue initiative." IBANYS urges all of our member banks, associate members and allies to join the effort. Cure the Blue" raises funds and awareness regarding prostate cancer in New York State. Visit curetheblue.com to get involved! Of all new cancer cases in the nation, prostate cancer represents 9.6%. In 2017, estimates are there will be 161,360 new cases, and that more than 26,000 people will die of the disease. Support IBANYS' "Cure the Blue" campaign to help New Yorkers participate to promote prostate cancer awareness and research.

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: (716) 907-5500. They also offer  a unique program providing a $500 reba
te on any new Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram or Hyundai vehicle. It may only be offered though individual banks, not through IBANYS itself. If your bank and employees might be interested, drop us a line and we will forward it to Alan Justin, who will reach out to you. I
f you are not currently participating in the My Wellness Resource program, we encourage you to 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 
customers.  www.icba.org

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


Meeting the insurance needs of depository financial institution clients, which can range from a community bank to a credit union to a diversified financial company, can be a challenge. Fortunately, Travelers (an IBANYs preferred provider) has many solutions for this varied client segment.  Travelers has flexible insurance options for a wide spectrum of financial institution professionals, including coverages for banks, credit unions, insurance companies, investment advisers, hedge fund, and mutual funds, venture capital, and private equity firms.
Travelers Knows Financial Institutions.  With dedicated policies for financial institutions, Travelers offers a range of  insurance protection, including D&O, cyber, professional liability, financial institution bonds, ID fraud expense reimbursement and a full portfolio of property/casualty coverages. Choose either standalone coverage or a suite of coverages. Travelers has the flexibility to adapt to you and your business.  Contact Mark Horton: (800) 542-8770. . .or, visit:    
. . .That in its 105 years of existence, the U.S. Senate Banking, Housing & Urban Affairs (and its predecessor, the Committee on Banking & Currence) has been chaired by just two New Yorkers? Sen. Robert F. Wagner (D) chaired from 1936-47, and Sen. Alfonse M. D'Amato (R) from 1995-99. 

. . .Only  Five New Yorkers have chaired the House Financial Services Committee (and its predecessor, the  Banking and Currency Committee) in its 153 years: Theodore Pomeroy (R), 1865-69; Samuel Cox (D), 1875-77; Henry Bacon (D), 1891-93; Edward Vreeland (R), 1909-11 and Edmund Platt (R), 1919-20.


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  

Natalie Rowan
Marketing and Social Media Assistant