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CBA's Public Policy Issues

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CFPB Resource Center

On July 21, 2011, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), an agency with unprecedented power and authority to regulate the market for consumer financial products, opened its doors for business.

Because of our focus and expertise on retail banking products and services, CBA is well positioned to be your industry resource on the CFPB and will regularly update this page as the rulemaking process unfolds. In addition, our insights and analysis on CFPB-related issues, along with the latest news and information, will provide you with the necessary tools to navigate this new regulatory environment, so please visit often.

CBA’s 2014 Legislative & Regulatory Priorities


CFPB Report
January 30, 2015

CFPB Urges Lenders to Offer More Student Loan Modifications Available
On Thursday, January 29, 2015, the CFPB announced interagency guidance and a voluntary survey of student loan market participants about the loan modification options being made available to borrowers. Issued by the OCC, Federal Reserve, FDIC, National Credit Union Administration, CFPB, and the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council State Liaison Committee, the guidance aims to supply lenders with principles for providing consumers with graduated repayment options at the time of origination. The guidance notes: "lenders should "prudently underwrite the loans in a manner consistent with safe and sound lending practices." The principles include:
  • Ensure orderly repayment;
  • Avoid payment shock;
  • Align payment terms with a borrower's income;
  • Provide borrowers with clear disclosures; and
  • Comply with all applicable federal and state consumer laws and regulations and reporting standards.
In addition, the CFPB sent a letter to several market participants requesting information on the terms and availability of their loan modification programs. The Bureau asked participants how program information is made available to consumers, and the number of consumers who make use of the more flexible repayment options.
 
CBA President and CEO Richard Hunt issued a press statement in response to the Bureau's announcement, highlighting the 97 percent repayment rate of private student loans and reiterated CBA members' commitments to working with distressed borrowers.
 
CFPB Proposes Changes to Mortgage Rules
On Thursday, January 29, 2015, the CFPB proposed several changes to its mortgage rules to facilitate lending by small creditors, particularly in rural and underserved areas. The proposal is intended to increase the number of financial institutions able to offer certain types of mortgages in rural and underserved areas, and to help small creditors adjust their business practices to comply with the new rules.
 
"Responsible lending by community banks and credit unions did not cause the financial crisis, and our mortgage rules reflect the fact that small institutions play a vital role in many communities," said CFPB Director Richard Cordray said in a press release. "Today's proposal will help consumers in rural or underserved areas access the mortgage credit they need, while still maintaining these important new consumer protections."
 
The proposal would:
  • Expand the definition of "small creditor;"
  • Include mortgage affiliates in calculation of small-creditor status;
  • Expand the definition of "rural" areas;
  • Provide grace periods for small creditor and rural or underserved creditor status;
  • Create a one-year qualifying period for rural or underserved creditor status; and
  • Provide additional implementation time for small creditors.
The proposed rule will be open for public comment until March 30, 2015.
 
CFPB Announces New Senior Leadership Staff
On Friday, January 23, 2015, the CFPB announced the following additions to their senior leadership staff:
  • Assistant Director of Enforcement - Anthony Alexis
  • Deputy Chief Operating Officer - Leandra English
  • Northeast Regional Director of Supervision Examinations - Agnes Bundy Scanlan
  • Chief Human Capital Officer - Jeffrey Sumberg
Senate Democrats Send TCPA Letter to FCC
On Wednesday, January 28, 2015, Senate Democrats sent a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regarding the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). The senators asked the FCC not to undermine the goal of the TCPA, stating: "Whether at home or on their mobile phones, consumers should not be subject to intrusive and unsolicited calls from telemarketers."
 
In a September 2014 petition, CBA expressly asks the FCC to provide clarification that our members – as well as a multitude of companies across most major business sectors – are able to send informational non-telemarketing communications to phone numbers previously provided by customers, but have subsequently been reassigned to another person unbeknownst to the calling company.

Senate Hearing on Cybersecurity Information Sharing
On Wednesday, January 28, 2015, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs held a hearing entitled" "Protecting America from Cyber Attacks: The Importance of Information Sharing." The Hearing, the Committee's first for the 114th Congress, coincided with national data privacy day. Information sharing between the public and private sector, the speed of which information is shared, liability protection when information is shared, cybersecurity "hygiene" best practices, and protecting consumers' personally identifiable information (PII) were discussed.
 
"The purpose of this hearing is to take that first step and develop an understanding of the reality of the cybersecurity threat—the frequency and complexity of the cyber-attacks U.S. businesses endure every day, what businesses can do to better defend themselves, and what businesses need from the federal government," said Committee Chairman Ron Johnson (R-WI) in his opening statement. Ranking Member Tom Carper (D-DE) added, "While businesses and the government appear to be getting better at sharing information all the time, more must be done to take the remaining uncertainty and guess work out of the process."
 
Senators and witnesses were generally in agreement that new laws are necessary to address the increasing number of cyber-attacks against U.S. companies. Information sharing between companies, and with the federal government, would be part of the solution for combatting cyber threats. Currently, there are privacy restrictions on how corporations can share data, especially consumer data, among each other and with the federal government. Shared data would need to be anonymized while still allowing for manipulation so it remains useful to combating cyber threats. It also would need to be shared quickly so institutions, both within the public and private sector, can respond effectively.

House Subcommittee Discusses Data Breach Legislation
On Tuesday, January 27, 2015, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade held a hearing entitled: "What are the Elements of Sound Data Breach Legislation?" The hearing discussed the elements which should be included in data breach legislation, including preemption, data security standards, and notification requirements.
 
"We need a plan in place that will help prevent data from being stolen in the first place, and will also alleviate consequences for consumers if hackers are successful. I am encouraged by the president's recent focus on this issue and call for a national standard, and I agree" stated Subcommittee Chairman Michael Burgess (R-TX).
 
Chairman Burgess and Vice-Chairman Leonard Lance (R-NJ) emphasized their desire to introduce and pass bipartisan legislation. Rep. Burgess stated data security in the financial services and health care industries should be addressed separately. In their opening statements and questions, Members generally agreed, with the increasing number of breaches, companies should take reasonable steps to safeguard data and there should be a duty to notify consumers of such breaches.

Past Reports

January 30, 2015
January 23, 2015
January 16, 2015
January 9, 2015
December 19, 2014
December 12, 2014
December 5, 2014
November 21, 2014
November 14, 2014
November 7, 2014
October 31, 2014
October 24, 2014
October 17, 2014
October 10, 2014
October 3, 2014
September 26, 2014
September 19, 2014
September 12, 2014
September 5, 2014
August 29, 2014
August 22, 2014
August 15, 2014
August 8, 2014
August 1, 2014
July 18, 2014
July 11, 2014
June 27, 2014
June 20, 2014
June 13, 2014
June 6, 2014
May 30, 2014
May 23, 2014
May 16, 2014
May 9, 2014
May 2, 2014
April 25, 2014
April 18, 2014
April 11, 2014
March 28, 2014
March 21, 2014
March 14, 2014
March 7, 2014
February 28, 2014
February 21, 2014
February 14, 2014
February 7, 2014
January 31, 2014
January 24, 2014
January 17, 2014
January 10, 2014

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