OCC: Acting Comptroller’s Statement on the Federal Reserve’s Action to Modernize the CRA

Acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian P. Brooks today released the following statement in appreciation of the Federal Reserve Board’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), which solicits stakeholder comment on how to improve Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) regulations for state-chartered banks that are members of the Federal Reserve System.

We welcome the Federal Reserve’s ANPR soliciting comments on how to improve the CRA framework for state-chartered, Fed-member banks. Public input and discourse fuels continuous improvement, and we look forward to reviewing the comments for potential insight into our own rulemaking that applies to national banks and savings associations. We are encouraged by our fellow regulators joining us in recognizing that we need to act to improve upon a system that was not working and to encourage banks to do more to support the communities they serve. We are pleased to see that many of the principles on which we worked together and that the OCC, FDIC, and Federal Reserve agreed upon prior to the finalization of the OCC rule in May will be part of their rulemaking discussion.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency finalized its rule modernizing and strengthening the CRA framework that applies to national banks and savings associations on May 20, 2020. The rule followed a multiyear process that formally began with the issuance of an ANPR in August 2018. The final rule reflects the thousands of helpful comments from stakeholders of all kinds on the ANPR and following Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that was issued with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in December 2019. The rule improves upon the previous status quo by clarifying what qualifies for CRA consideration, by evaluating bank activity more objectively, by requiring banks to lend and invest wherever they take the majority of their deposits, and by making reporting and recordkeeping timelier and more transparent. The rule increased and established new benefits for low and moderate-income populations, Indian Country, disabled populations, small and family-owned farms, and small business owners with the intent of driving more investment, lending, and services where they are needed most.

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