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NEW: CUNA Says Relief Bill Is 'Good First Step'

WASHINGTON (UPDATED: 4/26/13, 10:30 a.m. ET)--Credit Union National Association President/CEO Bill Cheney today commended Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.) for introducing legislation that would address several regulatory burdens facing credit unions and community banks.

"This legislation is a good first step toward providing regulatory relief, but it can only be viewed as a first step," Cheney said Thursday night when the bill was introduced. "More will need to be done to address the cumulative effect of regulatory changes that continue to challenge credit unions."

In a letter of thanks to Luetkemeyer for taking this step, Cheney reminded, "It is not just one new law or revised regulation that challenges credit unions but the cumulative effect of regulatory changes," a phenomenon that has been "building for over a decade."

The Luetkemeyer bill, called the "Community Lending Enhancement and Regulatory Relief Act (CLEAR Relief Act)," would aid community-based financial institutions--both credit unions and community banks--by:

  • Providing regulatory relief in the mortgage area; and
  • Eliminating a requirement that privacy notices be sent on an annual basis.

The CLEAR Relief Act would also eliminate a requirement that financial institutions verify that automated clearing house payments are not a prohibited transaction, if the financial institutions originating the transaction has warranted that they have complied with Office of Foreign Assets Control regulations.

"Your legislation would address several regulatory burdens facing credit unions and community banks, and we commend you for seeking common ground on regulatory relief legislation. It is important to recognize, however, that much more needs to be done to address the crisis of creeping complexity, and we look forward to continuing to work with you to that end," Cheney concluded.



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