Financial institutions such as community banks and credit unions play a critical role in our local economy. Local lending institutions can more effectively help customers because of their detailed knowledge of customers and close ties to the community. This presence helps businesses buy new equipment, add to the workforce and improve products and services to the local economy.
Unfortunately, in the wake of the Wall Street financial crisis, Democrats in Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act in 2010. More than 2,300 pages of new law and 400 new rules and mandates turned the financial sector on its head, all while failing to address the real causes of the financial crisis. Both the Congressional Budget Office and the Government Accountability Office estimated that $27 billion would be taken out of the economy because of this legislation and that 2,600 new, full-time federal employees would need to be hired—simply to implement the new rules and regulations created by the legislation. While larger financial institutions may have the resources to comply with these complex, time-consuming regulations, most community banks and small credit unions do not. Since 2010, the number of community banks and credit unions have rapidly declined in numbers and total assets. Rather than solve the problems it was created to fix, Dodd-Frank simply made the big banks bigger and reduced consumers’ access to loans and other financial services.
In 2018, I was proud to join my colleagues in passing the bipartisan Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, which was signed into law by President Trump. This law rolled back many of Dodd-Frank’s more onerous regulations for small, local financial institutions to staunch the loss of community financial institutions and increase access to their services. It also contained numerous provisions to safeguard consumers’ credit ratings, reduce identity theft and increase protections for borrowers.
I am supportive of our financial institutions which are critical to the continued success of small businesses and the local economy. Instead of imposing new regulatory burdens on institutions that had no part in the financial crisis, I am committed to working to ensure that the government gets out of the way and allows financial institutions to serve everyone.
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Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) responded to the attempt by the House to override the President’s veto on the disapproval of the Department of Labor’s definition of “fiduciary.” This legislation, H.J.Res. 88, would have nullified the regulation issued by the Department of Labor to revise the term “fiduciary,” ultimately changing the responsibilities within pension and retirement planning.