June 30, 2021
IBANYS Weekly E-Newsletter
  • Visit our website at www.ibanys.net to review our daily updates on COVID-19.
The President's Message
By John Witkowski, President & CEO
IBANYS has now settled into our new office space in Albany! Our new address is: 

Independent Bankers Association of New York State
194 Washington Ave, Suite 420
Albany, NY 12210.

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New York is finally emerging from the long period of COVID-19 shutdowns and restrictions and has begun to reopen! IBANYS is happy to announce that we will be returning to in-person meetings this fall with our "Comeback Celebration" on September 13/14 in Clayton, New York. The event will feature fishing, golfing and educational meetings with Keynote speaker, Stephen Ingalls, President & CEO, Catalyzer. Watch for more information and details in the near future.

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IBANYS congratulates Gerald J. “Jerry” Klein, Jr., who will retire today as President and CEO of Tompkins Mahopac Bank after 26 years of service to the company. Senior Vice President David DeMilia will succeed him as President & CEO. Jerry has served on our IBANYS board of directors, and we honor his distinguished leadership of the bank and of New York’s community banking industry. We wish him well in his retirement.

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. . .As always, thank you for all you do every day for your local customers, communities, small businesses and our industry. . . and, of course, for IBANYS!

The Clock is Ticking: Tool to Get You CECL Ready, Fast

Examiners will not be extending further delays to implement CECL. Join us and see how to take needless complexity and cost out of becoming CECL compliant. Our affordable CECLSolver™ tool is directly based on regulator guidance and is highly efficient for staff to use. Simply edit a template to prepare your loss estimates and reports — or we can assist you. We’ll show you how we can aggregate your data and calculate your Weighted Average Remaining Maturity (WARM) for your portfolio, if you desire. Register to learn more during this brief demo of the tool.
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An analysis of the DFAST Stress Test 2021 Results
Grigoris Karakoulas
June 26, 2021
On June 24 the Federal Reserve released the results of its annual bank stress test:
The results have showed that all 23 banks that participated in this year’s exercise remained well
above their risk-based minimum capital requirements.

All New York Businesses Must Be Alert – The Amendments of the New York Power of Attorney Statute Are Effective
Important amendments to the New York Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney (POA) statute became effective June 13. The revisions are based on the recommendations of a New York State Bar Association Task Force to fix problems with the prior law. I was the Business Law Section representative to the task force.

How to Maximize Your PPP Relationships
Community banks have the unique opportunity to expand and strengthen your relationships with your small business PPP loan account holders. Discover how to boost engagement with your PPP relationships using six key strategies and a free, downloadable cross-sell letter template.

AUGUST 11-12, 2021
9 AM- 4:00PM CST

  • Employee Recruitment, Selection, and Placement
  • Structural and Behavioral Interviewing
  • Driving Employee Engagement
  • Creating and Accountability Culture

CPE/HRCI Credit available!
In Person: $695
Virtual (via zoom): $595
$100 for each additional employee at same bank
  • Human Resource Managers
  • Branch Managers
  • Department/
  • Division Managers
  • Management/
  • Hiring/Coaching/
  • Counseling
Instructor, Kerry Sauley, is the Marjorie B. Ourso Excellence in Teaching
Professor at Rucks Department of Management
Louisiana State University,
Baton Rouge, LA.
News from ICBA
Slippery slope
Another yield curve shift has community bankers guessing.
By Jim Reber

And now for something completely different. Except it’s not; it just hasn’t been around for a number of years. But it most assuredly has an impact on your community bank’s bond portfolio and on the securities you’ll be thinking about purchasing the next time you’re in the market. 

IBANYS Webinars

Are you participating in IBANYS webinars? Now is the time! IBANYS webinars provide timely, important information on subjects of interest to New York community bankers including human resources, business development, investment, compliance and security and much more. They are valuable not only for their content, but for their convenience and low-cost. Take part from the comfort and privacy of your office, without leaving the bank. 
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Once you have your Subscription Token code, you can immediately register for webinars by using the code at checkout! (Subscription tokens not applicable for full series registrations, or other specials.)
Albany Update

State Updates

  • With the state legislative session over, many bills are awaiting Governor Cuomo's signature or veto. Here are some of the bills Cuomo has signed into law since the last scheduled day of legislative session on June 10.

  • Tenants and their advocates hope New York’s revamped rent relief program will finally help renters and landlords who have struggled to get assistance since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Paperwork requirements made it tough for tenants and landlords to get relief funds in a previous round of pandemic assistance. In 2020 New York dedicated $100 million from the federal CARES Act to rental relief and received 94,000 applications but wound up rejecting most applicants. It has dispersed $47 million to date to 18,000 applicants, far fewer than officials had hoped to reach. https://apnews.com/article/nyc-state-wire-ny-state-wire-business-health-coronavirus-pandemic-8e59caa61058394780169de9ce08aafb

  • A report from State Comptroller DiNapoli provides information about the State Fiscal Year 2021-22 Enacted Budget Financial Plan and discusses related risks and recommendations for actions that can be taken to continue to strengthen our financial position. One year ago, New York faced the prospect of damaging mid-year spending reductions to critical programs, uncertainty about the severity and length of the economic disruption and daunting out-year budget gaps. Now, cumulative budget gaps are estimated to have fallen to $3.4 billion over the next four years. https://www.osc.state.ny.us/files/reports/budget/pdf/budget-enacted-financial-plan-2021-22.pdf

  • The state budget enacted this spring shows a balanced budget for this fiscal year and next, but extending the budget window reveals large, yawning budget gaps growing from nearly $8 billion in 2026 to nearly $20 billion by the end of the decade, the Empire Center reports.

  • Seventeen months before the 2022 gubernatorial election, Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Long Island) was named the GOP’s presumptive nominee Monday after a straw poll awarded him 85% of the weighted vote among county chairs in New York. One county Republican chair (Westchester) voted for former Westchester County Executive & 2014 GOP gubernatorial nominee Rob Astorino. Andrew Giulinani received no votes. Both Astorino and Giuliani said they plan to stay in the race. 

Washington Update

Grassroots Action Alerts

ICBA and IBANYS are encouraging community banks to contact their members of Congress to:
  • Express opposition to the Biden administration’s plan to require banks to report customer account information to the IRS.
  • Call for hearings on tax-exempt credit unions acquiring taxpaying community banks. 

IRS Reporting: ICBA last week delivered a fact sheet to Congress detailing consumer and small-business opposition to the plan.

Credit Unions: In a recent article on LinkedIn, ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey discusses the growth of tax-subsidized acquisitions and their impact on consumers.

Federal Updates

ICBA recently published the Wake Up Messaging Playbook to provide ICBA members with guidance on effectively advocating a fair and level playing field between community banks and credit unions. The result of comprehensive market and opinion research to inform effective credit union messaging, the member-exclusive playbook provides candid insights from policy influencers, community bankers, and the general public on raising awareness of the credit union issue. The playbook and numerous other resources—including customizable communication resources, state-by-state reports on the credit union impact, and more—are available on ICBA’s Wake Up resource center.

The Biden administration announced a new series of steps to prevent evictions and foreclosures.
Extensions: The actions include extensions through July 31 of:
  • The CDC’s federal eviction moratorium.
  • Eviction moratoriums for Federal Housing Administration borrowers and USDA multifamily housing communities.
  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac moratoriums on single-family foreclosures and real-estate-owned evictions. 
Other Actions: In its announcement, the administration also:
  • Encouraged state courts to adopt anti-eviction diversion practices.
  • Issued Treasury Department guidance to support the rapid deployment of emergency rental assistance.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau amended mortgage servicing regulations to prevent foreclosures as federal moratoria are phased out, though institutions defined as small servicers are exempt.

New Rule: Effective Aug. 31, the 2021 Mortgage Servicing COVID-19 Final Rule amends Regulation X by:
  • Requiring servicers to meet procedural safeguards before initiating foreclosures for certain mortgages through the end of the year.
  • Allowing servicers to offer streamlined loan modifications to borrowers with COVID-19-related hardships without requiring borrowers to submit all the paperwork for every possible option.
  • Requiring servicers to increase their outreach to borrowers before initiating foreclosures and provide additional information to struggling borrowers. 

The rule exempts institutions that meet the small servicer standard of 5,000 loans or less serviced annually, which includes most community banks. ICBA last month thanked the CFPB for including the small-servicer exemption in its proposal in recognition of community banks’ “high touch” customer service “designed to ensure loan performance and a strong reputation in local communities.” Read the final rule. Read executive summary.

  • The Treasury Department and IRS released state-by-state data through early June for Economic Impact Payments delivered through the American Rescue Plan Act. This third round of EIPs included 163.5 million payments totaling nearly $390 billion. The agencies said more than 85 percent of the third round of EIP dollars were paid through direct deposit, up from 77 percent during the first round of EIPs last year. Data is available on the IRS website, the EIP data is broken down by state, income category, and filing status.

  • The U.S. Supreme Court declined to lift the national moratorium on evictions for tenants impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, following a decision by a federal judge in Washington last month that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's moratorium was legally unsupportable. Last week, the CDC extended the eviction moratorium for one more month through July; it was previously set to expire today. CNN

  • The FDIC and Federal Reserve Board issued the 2021 list of distressed or underserved nonmetropolitan middle-income geographies. These are geographic areas where revitalization or stabilization activities are eligible to receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration under the community development definition.

Nominations & Appointments

  • President Biden has appointed Sandra Thompson Acting Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling expanded presidential powers to make it easier to oust the agency chief. Thompson has served as Deputy Director of the FHFA's Division of Housing Mission and Goals since 2013. She replaces Trump appointee Mark Calabria.

  • President Biden will nominate housing nonprofit executive Julia Gordon as Commissioner of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Gordon is the president of the National Community Stabilization Trust, which facilitates the rehabilitation of homes in underserved markets.

  • The SEC named New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal as head of the agency's enforcement division. In New Jersey, Grewal led the state's securities bureau. Politico 

  • The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced new appointments to its leadership team: Naa Awaa Tagoe, acting deputy director, Division of Housing Mission and Goals; Daniel Coates, senior advisor to Acting Director Sandra Thompson; Danielle Walton, acting chief of staff.