On Tuesday, August 4, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo., the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency(OCC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB), and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) (collectively, the agencies) held the fourth in a series of outreach meetings as part of the interagency effort to reduce regulatory burden as required by the Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996 (EGRPRA). The outreach meetings provides interested parties an opportunity to comment on regulatory burden reduction directly to the agencies’ staff members and senior management.
During the outreach meeting in Kansas the FDIC Vice Chairman, Thomas M. Hoenig, said well-capitalized banks that stick to traditional banking should be eligible for exemption from some regulations. Hoenig stated, “I think it is fair to say there is broad agreement that the regulatory burden should be eased for community banks. However, what is proving more difficult is finding agreement on what exactly defines a traditional bank and what specific regulatory changes would give such banks meaningful relief without compromising bank soundness or consumer protections.” Further, he stated “regulators should use discretion when examining for compliance with regulations that clearly have little to do with the bank being examined….the public needs commercial banks to provide credit to small businesses and consumers across the country without the burdensome constraints of misdirected regulation.”