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CUNA to Senate Support amended interchange delay
WASHINGTON (6/8/11)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has urged senators that when a scheduled vote comes up at 2 p.m. (ET) today to vote in support of a revised delay provision for the debit interchange fee cap rules. The revised legislation, which was introduced by Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) yesterday, would shorten the implementation delay to a maximum of one year. CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney on Tuesday said that the amendment presents “a fair approach” to the interchange fee cap issue and “ensures that small issuer and consumer impact is taken into consideration when the [Fed] regulates debit interchange fees." Under the delay proposal, the Federal Reserve, the National Credit Union Administration, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency would be given six months to determine whether or not the Fed's current proposal accounts for all fixed and incremental costs to financial institutions, whether the proposed debit interchange cap would adversely impact consumers, and if a small issuer exemption would work as planned. The Fed would then be given six months to rework the interchange rules if the Fed and one of these other regulators determine that the rule needs revision. The current rules would be implemented as planned if no issues are detected by the study. The Fed would be required to review its interchange regulations within two years of their implementation. The amended legislation has bipartisan support, with Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), who voted in favor of the Durbin amendment, among its cosponsors. Sens. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), John Kyl (R-Ariz.), Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) are among the cosponsors of the amendment, and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) also said he would support Tester's amendment in a Tuesday release. The is being offered as an amendment to a bill to reauthorize the Economic Development Administration (EDA), and Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Tuesday said a vote on the amendment would take place early this afternoon. The amendment will need 60 yes votes to be added to the EDA reauthorization bill. For the full CUNA letter, use the resource link.


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