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Washington
CUNA urges blocked list in UIGEA rules
WASHINGTON (9/17/08)—The House Financial Services Committee late Tuesday passed an amended version of the Payment System Protection Act (H.R. 6870), a bill that would place a moratorium on the implementation of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) as currently proposed by the Department of Treasury and the Federal Reserve Board. The approved bill includes an important mandate that the Department of Treasury compile and maintain a list of unlawful internet gambling sites, similar to the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) list. Prior to the committee’s consideration of the bill, the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) wrote to its chairman, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) voicing strong support H.R. 6870. CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica wrote that without intervention by Congress in the implementation of the UGEIA, credit unions and other financial institutions would be forced to comply with a regulation that does not even define the type of transactions that would be required to be blocked. An earlier version of Frank’s bill was defeated this summer by a tie vote. When the new bill was introduced, it was stripped its provision ordering the Treasury to maintain the list of unlawful gambling sites. CUNA urged that provision be adopted. “We feel very strongly that such a list is absolutely essential for credit unions and other financial institution to be able to comply with the extraordinary burdens of UIGEA.” Mica told Frank in the CUNA letter. He added, “Without such a list, there is no way for financial institutions to know which entities are unlawful Internet gambling providers.” CUNA Vice President of Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan said that while CUNA is “delighted with the positive outcome of the House committee vote,” final votes in the House and Senate are unlikely this year due to the dwindling congressional calendar.


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