May 16, 2018

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Speaker:  House to Address Community Bank Relief Bill 

Congress has reached a deal that will allow a House vote on pending community bank regulatory relief legislation, House Speaker Paul Ryan said at a press briefing.

In exchange for the House proceeding to a vote on S. 2155, the Senate will receive a package of additional regulatory relief measures that have already passed the House Financial Services Committee.

Ryan wasn't clear on the timing of a House vote, but it could come before lawmakers break for the Memorial Day recess.

To continue the push for final passage of the bipartisan Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act, ICBA is urging community banks to contact the House using ICBA's Be Heard grassroots action center.

ICBA this week delivered to the House a petition signed by more than 10,000 community bank employees and allies urging immediate passage of S. 2155, but continued outreach is needed to assure a quick vote on S. 2155.

Contact the House Today  > 
State Associations Urge House Passage of Reg Relief Bill

A coalition of 43 ICBA-affiliated state community banking associations, including ACB, called on the House to take up and pass the bipartisan Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155) as quickly as possible.

The coalition letter follows this week's release of an ICBA petition of more than 10,000 community bank employees and allies urging immediate passage of S. 2155, which includes many provisions inspired by ICBA's Plan for Prosperity platform.

House Speaker Paul Ryan this week announced that lawmakers have reached a deal allowing the House to vote on the legislation in exchange for sending a separate batch of regulatory relief bills to the Senate.

With the House expected to take up S. 2155 as soon as this month, ICBA is calling on community bankers to continue urging their representatives to support the measure.

The Coalition Letter  >
Contact Your Representatives Today  > 
The House of Representatives is expected to take up its version of the farm bill this week (H.R. 2). Community bankers can weigh in with their members of Congress through a Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau petition and social media campaign.

ICBA and roughly 300 farm organizations this week urged House members to oppose any amendments that could jeopardize passage of a new farm bill. That letter followed a separate letter from 43 ICBA state affiliates, including ACB,  opposing any reduction in funding for crop insurance programs.

ICBA's farm bill priorities are laid out in its "Focus on Farm Policy" white paper

Letter to the House  >
Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau Petition 
The Farm Credit System's regulator finalized a regulation on investment eligibility that had been pending since 2014.

Farm Credit Administration representatives said during the meeting that the regulation would not change the FCA's case-by-case approval of FCS investment activities, contrary to banker claims.

However, by expanding the categories of what are considered investments, the regulation would likely increase FCS investment activities, including the extension of credit for non-farm lending labeled as "investments."

More from FCA  > 
FFIEC Issues New Customer Due Diligence and Beneficial Ownership Examination Procedures       
The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) issued new examination procedures on the final rule, "Customer Due Diligence Requirements for Financial Institutions," issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) on May 11, 2016.

These examination procedures apply to banks, savings and loan associations, savings associations, credit unions, and branches, agencies, and representative offices of foreign banks.

The new examination procedures replace those in the current "Customer Due Diligence - Overview and Examination Procedures" section of the FFIEC's Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual. In addition, a new overview and examination procedures were developed for the beneficial ownership requirements for legal entity customers.
The FFIEC member agencies created these procedures in close collaboration with FinCEN and the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
FinCEN's 2016 final rule clarifies customer due diligence requirements and also includes a new requirement for covered financial institutions to identify and verify the identity of beneficial owners of certain legal entity customers. Banks and other covered financial institutions must comply with this rule beginning on May 11, 2018.

Customer Due Diligence - Overview and Examination Procedures  >

Beneficial Ownership for Legal Entity Customers - Overview and Examination Procedures 
DOJ Announces Anti - 'Piling On' Policy

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced a new Justice Department policy that encourages DOJ units and other law enforcement agencies to coordinate when imposing multiple penalties for the same conduct. "It is important for us to be aggressive in pursuing wrongdoers," he said at an event in New York. "But we should discourage disproportionate enforcement of laws by multiple authorities." In particular, he cited concerns about "piling on" with "unfair duplicative penalties."
This policy is of particular relevance to regulated industries in which "a company may be accountable to multiple regulatory bodies," Rosenstein explained. "That creates a risk of repeated punishments that may exceed what is necessary to rectify the harm and deter future violations."
The new policy affirms that federal criminal enforcement authority should not be used against a company for purposes unrelated to the investigation of a possible crime. "We should not employ the threat of criminal prosecution solely to persuade a company to pay a larger settlement in a civil case," he said. It also directs DOJ departments to coordinate with each other and encourages DOJ attorneys to coordinate with other federal, state, overseas and local agencies when seeking to resolve a case addressing the same misconduct.
The Speech  > 
Credit Union Tax Exemption Targeted      
ICBA launched a series of messages to members of Congress and staff on the evolution of tax-exempt credit unions.

Highlighting a recent American Banker series on the development of the tax exemption, ICBA's campaign exposes the credit union industry's aggressive pursuit of growth and rejection of its original mission.

The American Banker Series  > 

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