CBA’s Hunt Testifies at House Subcommittee Hearing on BCFP Reforms

On Wednesday, June 6, 2018, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit held a hearing on improving transparency and accountability at the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. In the Bureau’s Semi-Annual Report to the President and Congress in April, Acting Director Mulvaney requested that Congress enact four changes to establish greater accountability and transparency for the Bureau. These changes included:

 

  1.  Fund the Bureau through Congressional appropriations;
  2.  Require legislative approval of major Bureau rules;
  3.  Ensure that the Director answers to the President in the exercise of executive authority; and,
  4.  Create an independent Inspector General for the Bureau.

 

The hearing examined these recommendations, as well as other reforms for improving the Bureau. CBA President and CEO Richard Hunt testified at the hearing on ways to depoliticize and bring needed transparency to the Bureau. A copy of CBA's full written testimony and opening statement, as prepared for delivery, is available here. A full hearing summary is available here.

 

The witnesses for the hearing included:

 

  • Mr. Richard Hunt, President and Chief Executive Officer, Consumer Bankers Association
  • Mr. Steven G. Day, President, American Land Title Association
  • Ms. Kate (Larson) Prochaska, Director, Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Mr. Hilary O. Shelton, Director, NAACP Washington Bureau, Senior Vice President, Advocacy and Policy, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
  • Mr. Elmer K. Whitaker, Chief Executive Officer, Whitaker Bank Corporation of Kentucky

 

Key takeaways:

 

  • There was strong support from most of the witnesses as well as Members of the Committee on both sides of the aisle for changing the leadership structure at the Bureau from a sole director to a bipartisan commission.
  • Members of the Committee, especially on the Democratic side of the aisle, focused on lending discrimination. Many of their questions specifically dealt with HMDA, CRA and other fair lending related matters.
  • Republican Members of the Committee discussed regulatory burdens and asked witnesses if regulations were limiting banking activity, like loan originations.