CANTON, Ohio – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) convened a roundtable discussion with local bankers and business leaders from Stark County at the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce today. Brown – ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – has held more than 200 roundtable listening sessions across Ohio’s 88 counties.
“Main Street institutions are key to providing families, small businesses, and farmers in our communities the services they need to buy homes, send their kids to college, save for retirement, and grow their businesses,” Brown said. “Discussions like today’s roundtable help shape the work I do in Washington to help these institutions better serve Ohioans.”
Brown is a staunch advocate for small banks and credit unions, which are cornerstones of their communities and vital to the U.S. economy. The long-term, bipartisan transportation bill that became law in December included provisions that Brown and Banking Committee Democrats proposed earlier in 2015 (S. 1491) to provide the kind of targeted relief for community banks and credit unions that Democrats and Republicans agree is long overdue. The bill will help America’s smallest financial institutions be more efficient, cut some of their administrative costs, and still protect consumers. A few of the key provisions will do the following:
- Boost the number of small banks that could be eligible for Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation examinations on an 18-month cycle, instead of an annual cycle.
- Allow privately insured credit unions to be eligible for membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) system and receive FHLB funding.
According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, small banks hold 14 percent of America's banking assets and make almost half of all of the smaller loans to farms and small businesses. In Ohio, 85 percent of the community banks have less than $500 million in total assets.