News Releases

Sen. Moran Emphasizes Importance of Community Banks, Credit Unions at Senate Banking Hearing

"Relationship banking is a significant component of whether or not many of the communities I represent have a future."

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), a member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, emphasized the importance of reducing the regulatory burden facing community banks and credit unions yesterday during a Senate Banking Hearing entitled, “Examining The State Of Small Depository Institutions.”

According to annual report compiled by the Community Bankers Association of Kansas, there were 290 banks in the state of Kansas at the end of 2013, 300 institutions at the end of 2012, and 318 the year before that. Since December of 2007, Kansas has lost 67 banks.

Sen. Moran has a number of bipartisan bills capable of passing this Senate to reduce the regulatory burden facing smaller lenders including the Privacy Notice Modernization Act of 2013, S. 635; the CLEAR Relief Act, S. 1349; and the Financial Institutions Examination Fairness and Reform Act, S. 727.

Sen. Moran: (0:14) “Our states, Mr. Chairman, are very similar. And community banks and credit unions are very important to the local fabric and the vitality of the towns that comprise our states.

(1:05) “I hope that the result of today's hearing is that you will take back with you a recommitment toward finding a way to relieve the burden of those community financial institutions. And while it is useful, I suppose, for you to express to us your desire, your sympathy, your care, your agreement with our position, I hope that today's hearing results in action taken by the agencies to actually make a difference in how you conduct the exams, reviews, and what rules and regulations you place upon those community institutions.

(1:42) “In my view, the burden also lies with Congress. My colleagues have outlined a series of pieces of legislation that have been introduced. But the reality is none of them have been passed. And so while I may sound critical of the regulators, I'm also critical of the United States Senate where I serve.

(2:23) “A primary motivation for me to serve in Congress has been a belief in the value of rural America. Relationship banking is a significant component of whether or not many of the communities I represent have a future. It is only that community financial institution that's going to make a decision about loaning to a grocery store in town. It's only that entity that's going to decide that that farmer is worthy of one more year of credit.

(2:50) “And so as we develop policies in Washington, D.C., that make everything so uniform a cookie-cutter approach to lending it means that many of my constituents in the communities they live in will have a much less bright future, and a significant reduction in the opportunity to pursue their farming and business careers and occupations.”