Today In Washington

January 11, 2018

Source: AEO Government Relations Team, Madison Services Group

Changes to CRA: A Proposal 

In the early part of this year, the Treasury Department is expected to propose major changes to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The CRA, enacted in 1977, was designed to prevent redlining, a practice where banks would not lend in poor neighborhoods, and encourage banks to lend to the communities they operate within. Supporters of the law want the CRA to be expanded to include more low-income communities. Those in favor of reform argue the CRA has not kept up with technological advances, and results in penalties that are not related to the CRA at all. At issue is a test used to grade a bank’s compliance that includes the number of “community development” loans they provide to low-income communities and individuals, with bad grades resulting in restrictions on a bank’s activities. On December 20, 2017, Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting stated that he would like to circulate potential rule changes to regulators within 60 days, with a public comment period to follow after.  


H.R. 4743, the “Small Business 7(a) Lending Oversight Reform Act of 2018,” introduced by House Small Business Committee Chair Steve Chabot (R-OH). This bill is aimed at strengthening oversight to SBA’s 7(a) guaranty loan program and providing greater transparency to Congress about SBA’s oversight activities. It provides clarity to the “credit elsewhere test,” as well as transparency to 7(a) lenders working with small business borrowers, to ensure SBA is only backing loans to borrowers who are unable to get a loan through conventional lending. Additionally, the bill provides flexibility for the Administrator to increase the authorization cap of the program — with the consent of Congress — in order to prevent a shutdown of the program should it reach its cap. Senate Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee Chair James Risch (R-ID) has introduced S. 2283, an identical companion bill in the upper chamber. A section-by-section of the bill can be found here.   

H.R. 4754, a bill “To amend the Small Business Act to provide prospective construction contractors with information about an agency's policies on the administration of change orders to allow such contractors to make informed business decisions regarding the pricing of bids or proposals,” introduced by Representative Don Bacon (R-NE). Text is not yet available.  

Share this...

Recent News

April 18, 2018
Today in Washington
HSBC Chair Steve Chabot Urges for Inclusion of Small Business Bills in FY19 NDAA

April 11, 2018
Today in Washington
Bill Package Introduced to Redesign IRS – Yesterday, Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight Chair Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and Ranking Member John Lewis (D-GA), introduced a bipartisan package of bills to redesign the IRS.

April 10, 2018
Today in Washington
Trump Administration Releases First Rule on Obamacare – In response to an Executive Order issued by the President last fall, HHS issued a final rule yesterday, which will provide states with more options to select an essential health benefit plan.

March 22, 2018
Today in Washington
Text of Omnibus Bill Released – House Republicans released the text for a $1.3T spending bill late last night. Congress has until tomorrow to pass the legislation and avoid a third government shutdown this year.

March 19, 2018
Today in Washington
FY18 Funding Deadline Nears – Congress is coming down to the wire to find an agreement to fund the government through September 30 and avoid a third partial government shutdown this year.

March 14, 2018
Today in Washington
Dodd-Frank Regulatory Reform – Today, the Senate is expected to vote on a motion to limit debate on S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”

March 13, 2018
Today in Washington
Debate Continues: Dodd-Frank Regulatory Relief – Today, the Senate continues debate of S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”

March 12, 2018
Today in Washington
Small Business Committee markups – The House and Senate Small Business Committees will hold markups this week.

March 9, 2018
Today in Washington
Congress Adjourns for the Week – Congress has adjourned, and will return on Monday, March 12. When they return, the Senate will continue consideration of S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”