WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act:
“I’m a strong supporter of Dodd-Frank, and I have serious concerns about the big banks getting even bigger, in part because of a current one-size-fits-all approach. The bipartisan regulatory reform bill we’re considering this week ensures that financial institutions will continue to be more rigorously regulated by more regulators than before the 2008 market collapse. This is critical to ensuring our financial system is stronger, sounder, and more stable than it was before the crisis. The bill also adjusts certain aspects of Dodd-Frank to make sure that the level of additional regulation is based on the size of the institution and the riskiness of its activity.
“I support the bill because I believe this targeted approach—together with new consumer protections for servicemembers, veterans, those with impaired credit, and people hurt by data breaches—represents an improvement to existing law. And it addresses my concern about the dramatic consolidation of the Virginia banking industry. We’ve seen the number of banks in the Commonwealth decrease by nearly 35 percent since Dodd-Frank was passed eight years ago, which means Virginians in rural and impoverished areas that aren’t served by bigger banks have trouble accessing credit. The legislation is strongly supported by credit unions, community banks and minority and women-owned banks that operate in these underserved communities.
“The bill is a compromise, and I think it can be improved in certain respects. The legislation currently requires that banks writing 96 percent of American mortgages must comply with elevated Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) reporting requirements. I have filed an amendment to the bill to require even more banks to provide enhanced data on mortgages, and I hope we will get the opportunity to vote on this change.”