WASHINGTON — A group of community bankers from diverse institutions across the country met with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and his team to explore unnecessary and outdated regulations that are hindering economic growth and making it more difficult for banks to serve their customers and communities.
Among the attendees were ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols and 16 bankers, including ABA officers and several members of key ABA committees, as well as a delegation of bankers from the Independent Community Bankers of America. Topics of discussion included the importance of the community bank business model, ensuring regulation is tailored to institutions’ unique characteristics, mortgage finance reform, the ability of community banks to raise capital and other important issues.
Nichols commended Treasury officials for holding the meeting to hear the challenges banks face serving their clients, customers and communities in today’s regulatory environment.
“Meetings like this provide an important opportunity for bankers to shed light on specific problems that are holding back economic growth and providing little or no regulatory value,” Nichols said. “We support effective regulation that protects safety and soundness. Highly prescriptive and ill-tailored rules are making it much harder for community banks to make loans to creditworthy borrowers and otherwise serve their clients and communities. Given the amount and pace of financial regulation in recent years, it is critical for regulators to evaluate what is working and what is not. We thank Treasury for listening to a wide variety of perspectives as they conduct a careful review of the broad range of financial laws and regulations — an examination that we hope will allow banks to go even further in driving our economy forward.”
This meeting comes less than a month after several community bank leaders, representing both ABA and ICBA, met with President Trump and his economic leaders at the White House. The president made clear in that meeting that the vitality of community banking is a top priority for his administration.
ABA members who participated in the meeting include:
- Dorothy A. Savarese, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank, Orleans, Mass. Savarese is also chairman of ABA.
- Kenneth L. Burgess, Jr., chairman of FirstCapital Bank of Texas, Midland, Texas. Burgess is also chairman-elect of ABA.
- George W. Hermann, president and CEO of Windsor Federal Savings, Windsor, Conn. Hermann is also treasurer of ABA.
- Patricia A. Husic, president and CEO of Centric Bank, Harrisburg, Penn. Husic also serves on ABA’s Board of Directors.
- Stanley D. Jenks, president and CEO of Security Savings Bank, Monmouth, Ill. Jenks is also chairman of ABA’s Government Relations Council and serves on ABA’s Board of Directors.
- Leslie R. Andersen, president and chief executive officer of Bank of Bennington, Bennington, Neb. Andersen served as chairman of ABA’s Government Relations Council and is a former member of ABA’s Board of Directors. She also serves on ABA’s Endorsed Solutions Banker Advisory Council.
- Shan L. Hanes, president and CEO of First National Bank of Elkhart, Elkhart, Kan. Hanes also serves on ABA’s Agricultural and Rural Bankers Committee.
- Stacey J. Bentley, president and CEO of Community Bank and Trust in Waterloo, Iowa. Bentley also serves on ABA’s Membership Council and ABA’s Credit Union Committee.
- William J. Wagner, chairman, president and CEO of Northwest Bank, Warren, Penn. Wagner also serves on ABA’s American Bankers Council and ABA’s BankPac Committee.
The following bankers represented ICBA in the meeting:
- Jeff Dick, chairman, president and CEO of MainStreet Bank in Fairfax, Va.
- Steve Handke, president and CEO of Union State Bank of Everest, Kan.
- Jack Hartings, president and CEO of The Peoples Bank Co. in Coldwater, Ohio
- Ronald Paul, chairman and CEO of EagleBank in Bethesda, Md.
- Mark Schroeder, chairman and CEO of German American Bancorp in Jasper, Ind.
- Sam Vallandingham, president and CEO of First State Bank in Barboursville, W.Va.
- Noah Wilcox, chairman and CEO of Grand Rapids State Bank in Grand Rapids, Minn.
The American Bankers Association is the voice of the nation’s $17 trillion banking industry, which is composed of small, regional and large banks that together employ more than 2 million people, safeguard $13 trillion in deposits and extend more than $9 trillion in loans.