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New CFPB tool to streamline comment process
WASHINGTON (2/17/12)--The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Thursday announced a new online comment tool to streamline its public comment process, as the bureau continues to accept public comment on how some financial regulations themselves could be streamlined.

Under the Dodd-Frank Act, rulewriting authority for consumer financial protection laws was transferred to the CFPB from federal financial institution regulators. The CFPB last year announced it would accept public comment on how these regulations could be streamlined "to make it easier for banks, credit unions and others to follow the rules" and to ensure that regulations work better for consumers and the firms that serve them.

The new online comment tool, which is hosted on the CFPB's homepage, consumerfinance.gov/regcomments/, asks for personal and business-related contact information, and then moves the user on to forms that collect specific comments on CFPB regulations.

The online comment form offers a scrollable list of 19 regulations the agency is accepting comment on, and also allows commenters to select individual sections of those regulations.

Commenters can then write what specific changes they would make, explain the rationale behind those changes, and provide additional details on how their suggested modifications would impact consumers and financial services firms.

The CFPB said commenters may consider suggesting provisions of regulations that should be:
  • Simplified, rationalized, or consolidated;
  • Relaxed, modified, or eliminated, perhaps for smaller firms or certain classes of transactions without undermining essential protections;
  • Updated to reflect current practices and technology;
  • Adjusted to avoid unintended consequences; or
  • Changed to remove an obstacle to responsible innovation.
The agency will accept streamlining suggestions until March 5.

The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has asked credit unions to identify their highest priorities for updating, modifying, or eliminating specific provisions of regulations that are outdated, unduly burdensome, or unnecessary, and issued a comment call on the CFPB's regulatory streamlining endeavor.

CUNA continues to work with credit union leagues, the American Association of Credit Union Leagues' Regulatory Advocacy Advisory Committee, key CUNA subcommittees, credit union councils, and other credit union officials to develop regulatory streamlining suggestions, and is encouraging credit unions to offer their own recommendations to the CFPB.

For the new CFPB site and the CUNA comment call, use the resource links.
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