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Congressman Williams Votes to Protect Community Banks

Dec 12, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressman Roger Williams (R – Austin), who serves as a vice chair on the House Committee on Financial Services, voted in favor of H.R. 3971, the Community Institution Mortgage Relief Act of 2017, that passed the House today with a vote of 294-129.

Earlier today, Rep. Williams took to the House floor to speak in favor of this bill. 

Williams’ remarks below.

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in favor of H.R. 3971, the Community Institution Mortgage Relief Act of 2017.

“I would like to also thank the Gentlelady from New York, Ms. Tenney, for her hard work on this piece of legislation and her leadership on this issue.

“An overwhelming majority of my Financial Services Committee colleagues recognized the need for this bill, and I hope that the full House will also recognize that very same need by voting in favor of this meaningful legislation.

“Mr. Speaker, the problem right now is that community banks are being crushed by the sheer weight, magnitude and intricacy of habitual Washington regulations, and this is all thanks to the crippling effects of the failed Dodd-Frank.

“Currently, community financial institutions are facing overly burdensome rules implemented by the CFPB.

“The fact of the matter is, we need H.R. 3971 in order to provide needed regulatory relief to small financial institutions.

“By making two simple, minor changes, community financial institutions will be able to better serve their customers.

“To be clear, the institutions we are trying to help are not big banks, and they do not have the capabilities of big banks.

"To comply with the current burdensome escrow rules, community financial institutions must devote more resources, time, and employees on compliance - those costs get passed down to the consumer.

“Often times, under the pressure of the current regulatory framework, these financial institutions will choose not to participate in the escrow market at all simply because the rules are financially and technically hindering.

“By directing the CFPB to provide relief to lower the thresholds, we can help make things just a little bit easier on these vital community banks.

“Overall, we should not allow oppressive regulations to drive opportunity away from small servicers.

“Big banks and community financial institutions are not the same, and we should not treat them as such.

“As a small business owner myself for over 44 years and a steadfast defender of Main Street, I did not hesitate to support this measure. It is good for this country.

“I see the need for the good people of Central Texas to have more options. Our job here in Washington, many miles away from our communities and those we love, is to do what we can to make their lives easier, and Mr. Speaker,  HR 3971 makes life easier takes a step in the direction of making America better.

“In God We Trust. Merry Christmas. I yield my time back.”


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