Waters Statement on the OCC’s Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on CRA Modernization
Today, in response to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s release of an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) seeking comment on modernizing the regulatory framework to implement the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, made the following comment:
“Congress passed the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) to combat redlining and discriminatory lending practices by requiring banks to help meet the credit needs of all parts of the communities they serve, consistent with safe and sound operations. The law was passed in 1977 on a broadly bipartisan basis, and was subsequently implemented by all of the banking regulators working in unison. In the past forty years, technology has transformed the way the industry provides credit to their customers. Yet, millions of consumers in this country are unable to access affordable credit, and too many low- and moderate-income communities suffer blight from a lack of public and private investments. This is why I believe it is time to reform the CRA regulatory framework, but the banking regulators should work together and be responsive to the input of all stakeholders, including civil rights, consumer and community development groups, as they consider potential changes.
“This week’s unilateral decision to reopen the CRA by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) is of great concern given that the agency has recently taken other steps on its own – without coordinating with other regulators or seeking public input – to relax its enforcement of the CRA, including by reducing the frequency of big bank exams and easing the consequences of violating fair lending laws. I urge the OCC to collaborate with the other banking regulators, stakeholders and Congress moving forward.”