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ICBA Opposition to Proposed Bank Tax Makes News

ICBA NewsWatch Today 03/19/2014

In the NewsICBA Opposition to Proposed Bank Tax Makes NewsICBA’s opposition to a proposed arbitrary tax on financial institutions is making news. The Wall Street Journal reported on a recent meeting between ICBA President and CEO Cam Fine and House leadership staff in which Fine expressed sharp opposition to the proposed bank tax. “We’re going to beat this like a rented mule,” Fine said at the meeting. “They were surprised to see us supporting our brethren in Wall Street, but this is a united effort,” he told the Journal. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp’s (R-Mich.) tax-reform proposal includes a tax specifically targeting financial firms with more than $500 billion in assets. President Barack Obama has proposed a similar tax in every White House budget proposal since 2010. In a recent letter to House leadership and Ways and Means Committee members, ICBA and a coalition of other financial and business groups said an arbitrary tax on a single industry sector is at odds with the fundamental objective of comprehensive tax reform. The coalition wrote that the proposal also would undermine economic growth and job creation. CongressICBA Addresses Consumer Groups’ Objections to Reg-Relief BillSeveral consumer groups’ objections to ICBA-advocated regulatory relief legislation are unfounded, ICBA wrote in a letter to U.S. senators. The coalition led by the Center for Responsible Lending recently objected to provisions of the CLEAR Relief Act (S. 1349) that would relieve certain community bank loans held in portfolio from new qualified mortgage and escrow requirements. In its letter to senators, ICBA wrote that portfolio lending is safe and conservative, that $10 billion is a widely accepted community bank threshold and that community bank mortgages have low default rates. ICBA also wrote that current “small creditor” accommodations do not go far enough and that S. 1349 provides a clear test for qualifying mortgage and enjoys broad bipartisan support. ICBA urged lawmakers to cosponsor the legislation, which it said will help deter further industry consolidation that would leave many rural and small-town communities without access to customized and competitively priced banking services. S. 1349 is inspired by ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity regulatory relief platform. AdvocacyMeetings with Regulators Slated for Upcoming Washington Policy SummitCommunity bankers will be able to dialogue with their regulators at the upcoming ICBA Washington Policy Summit. Scheduled for April 29-May 2 in the nation’s capital, the summit will feature face-to-face meetings with regulators and members of Congress on important policy issues facing the community banking industry. Registration for the summit is free for community bankers and a spouse or guest. Visit ICBA’s Washington Policy Summit webpage to register today and make sure your voice is being heard in Washington. Learn More and Register. Go LocalCommunity Banks Can Add Social Media Info to ICBA LocatorCommunity banks can now include their social media information in ICBA’s Community Bank Locator. ICBA is encouraging community banks to add their social media outlets to the locator via their company profile. To update your branch or social media information, go to and use your username and password or email ICBA with your information. Questions? Email or call 800-422-8439. The Community Bank Locator, which is available at, allows consumers and small-business owners to find their local community bank by simply typing in their ZIP code. The locator also is available via an app for Android, BlackBerry and iPhone devices. With marketing activities planned for next month’s Community Banking Month and the ICBA Washington Policy Summit, community bankers will want to ensure their Community Bank Locator profile is up to date. Update Your Profile. ICBA NewsWatch Today is sponsored by FIS:When it comes to serving community banks, FIS is right in your neighborhood.  FIS understands that you’re more than a bank. You’re a vital resource to your community.  That’s why we offer a wide range of integrated solutions that can be tailored to the unique needs of your valued customers.  To stay competitive in an ever-changing banking landscape, you need to be more connected with your customers than ever before and  FIS is focused on connecting the best people, processes and technology to your business to help you succeed. For more information on FIS’ complete suite of technology solutions, visit LiteracyDeadline for NerdWallet Community Bank Award Entries Is FridayNerdWallet, a financial advice website, is seeking entrants for its first-ever Community Banking Local Project Award. NerdWallet is seeking submissions on community bank projects that highlight how community banks work with borrowers through good times and bad. To be considered for the award, entrants will need to prepare a short description of a local project funded in 2012 or 2013 that is $100,000 in total financing or larger. ICBA Senior Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff Terry Jorde will serve as the expert judge. The finalists and their financings will be recognized on NerdWallet’s award homepage and in a special feature on the website. The winning bank will be presented with an award, and NerdWallet will donate $1,500 to a charity of the winning bank’s choosing.            Entries, up to three per bank, must be submitted by this Friday. Enter Today! Watch Video on the Contest. EconomyHousing Starts Fall, Building Permits Rise in FebruaryHousing starts declined 0.2 percent in February and were down 6.4 percent from a year ago, according to the Commerce Department. Building permits rose 7.7 percent in February and were down 1.8 percent from last year. Completions were up 4.4 percent from last month and 21.9 percent from last year.EconomyConsumer Prices Up Slightly in FebruaryConsumer prices increased a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent in February on higher food prices, according to the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index. The CPI is up 1.1 percent over the past year.PollTake This Week’s Quick PollTake this week’s Quick Poll on the 2014 ICBA Washington Policy Summit, and view results from the previous poll on the impact of winter weather on job and economic growth. View the Archive.EducationICBA Hosting Upcoming Community Bank IT InstituteInformation technology solutions continue to evolve, creating opportunities for community banks to increase efficiency, improve service capabilities and better safeguard customers. The Community Bank IT Institute, scheduled for May 12-16 in Kansas City, will better position IT managers and officers for managing their banks' IT environment and risks. Your ability to understand how these solutions can be applied to your bank’s current technology platform can mean all the difference in today’s highly competitive environment. Learn More and Register.Products and ServicesWebinar Features Business Continuity Plan Testing Made Easy for BanksBeing properly prepared for disasters large and small can have a huge impact on your ability to serve your clients, maintain business and keep partners happy. Testing a disaster-recovery plan is not only an essential part of planning, but a required step that could mean the difference between giving in to a crisis and surviving one. ICBA Preferred Service Provider Agility Recovery is hosting a webinar at 2 p.m. (Eastern time) Thursday, March 27, on actionable advice on enhancing your testing program and examples of the benefits of testing that evolved out of the disasters from 2013. Register Now.Products and ServicesWebinar: What Examiners Expect in a Compliance Management SystemContinuity Control, ICBA’s new Preferred Service Provider, is hosting a free webinar at 1 p.m. (Eastern time) Thursday, March 27, titled “Compliance Management System—What are the Examiners Looking for?” to discuss what examiners and auditors expect community banks to have in place for a compliance management system. This is an issue that examiners are holding CEOs and boards responsible for. The webinar will dissect recent enforcement actions citing inadequate CMS and outline steps you can take to bullet-proof your institution. Register Now.

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