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Monday, April 6, 2015

Curry Backs ABA-Advocated Thrift Charter Legislation

Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry on Thursday urged Congress to pass ABA-supported legislation that would provide federal savings associations with more flexibility to serve their customers while retaining their unique charter.

Reps. Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.) and Jim Himes (D-Ct.) recently introduced H.R. 1660, which would allow thrifts chartered under the Home Owners’ Loan Act to elect to receive the lending powers -- and compliance responsibilities -- of national banks without changing their HOLA charters. The bill is part of ABA’s Agenda for America’s Hometown Banks.

In a speech to members of the Depositors Insurance Fund -- a fund that supplements FDIC insurance for Massachusetts-chartered banks -- Curry explained that the idea for the legislation came from Massachusetts, which has long since offered its state thrifts such flexibility.

“I have long thought that the system that has worked so well in Massachusetts should also be available to federal thrifts,” Curry said. “I am pleased to say that we are making progress toward this goal. I believe that the responsible and constructive manner in which Massachusetts bankers have used their authority is one key reason why similar authority is now within reach for federal thrifts, and I applaud you for it.” Read the speech.