Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) April 29, 2014 -- Today more than 1,000 community bankers and industry advocates gathered in Washington for the Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) annual Washington Policy Summit, which runs through Thursday. Community bankers from around the nation will meet with their members of Congress to discuss issues that impact community banks, local economies and their customers they serve on Main Street. Key issues include regulatory relief, housing-finance reform, ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity and ending the credit union and Farm Credit System tax subsidies. In addition to meeting with their policymakers, community bankers will hear remarks from key speakers include Senate Banking Committee members Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) on Wednesday and Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen on Thursday.
“Community banks nationwide are the bright spot in this country’s economic system by lending to local residents and small businesses to create jobs, fuel local economies and help entrepreneurs and small business thrive,” said ICBA Chairman John H. Buhrmaster, president of 1st National Bank of Scotia, N.Y. “We’re looking forward to speaking with our members of Congress this week so we can discuss key issues face-to-face.”
Community bankers will make specific recommendations on key issues in meetings with members of Congress, including:
• Supporting needed regulatory relief and ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity—the association’s legislative platform designed to provide regulatory and tax relief for community banks to promote economic growth.
• Advancing legislation already in motion such as the CLEAR Relief Act (S. 1349 and H.R. 1750), to promote tiered regulations for community banks, their customers and their communities.
• Supporting housing-finance reform that will have positive features and proven solutions for community banks and their customers. Community banks must continue to be able to sell individual loans for cash and retain loan servicing, and they must continue to have a financially strong, reliable and impartial secondary mortgage market to ensure the flow of mortgage credit to consumers nationwide continues.
• Keeping the Farm Credit System to its historical mission of serving the agricultural marketplace. The Farm Credit Act should further define and narrowly target FCS lending activities to refocus on serving bona fide farmers and ranchers and young, beginning and small farmers and their farmer-owned cooperatives.
• Opposing expanded powers for tax-subsidized credit unions, particularly a proposal to raise the cap on credit union business lending, and urging Congress to review the credit union industry’s federal tax subsidy.
For a full list of ICBA’s policy priorities, Washington Policy Summit and more information about community banks, visit http://www.icba.org.
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for more than 6,500 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services. For more information, visit http://www.icba.org.
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Jessica Wallace, Independent Community Bankers of America, http://www.icba.org, +1 (202) 821-4328, [email protected]