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Financial Institution Letters
  
[Federal Register: July 20, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 138)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 43347-43351]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr20jy04-16]                         

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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

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[[Page 43347]]

DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

12 CFR Chap. I

[Docket No. 04-18]

BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM

12 CFR Chap. II

[Docket No. R-1206]

FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION

12 CFR Chap. III

DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY

Office of Thrift Supervision

12 CFR Chap. V

[No. 2004-35]

 
Request for Burden Reduction Recommendations; Consumer 
Protection: Account/Deposit Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer 
Rules; Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996 
Review

AGENCIES: Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Treasury; 
Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board); Federal 
Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC); and Office of Thrift Supervision 
(OTS), Treasury.

ACTION: Notice of regulatory review; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: The OCC, Board, FDIC, and OTS (``we'' or ``the Agencies'') are 
reviewing our regulations to identify outdated, unnecessary, or unduly 
burdensome regulatory requirements pursuant to the Economic Growth and 
Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996 (EGRPRA). Today, we request 
your comments and suggestions on ways to reduce burden in rules we have 
categorized as Consumer Protection: Account/Deposit Relationships and 
Miscellaneous Consumer Rules, consistent with our statutory 
obligations. All comments are welcome. We specifically invite comment 
on the following issues: Whether statutory changes are needed; whether 
the regulations contain requirements that are not needed to serve the 
purposes of the statutes they implement; the extent to which the 
regulations may adversely affect competition; the cost of compliance 
associated with reporting, recordkeeping, and disclosure requirements, 
particularly on small institutions; whether any regulatory requirements 
are inconsistent or redundant; and whether any regulations are unclear.
    We will analyze the comments received and propose burden-reducing 
changes to our regulations where appropriate. Some of your suggestions 
for burden reduction might require legislative changes. Where 
legislative changes would be required, we will consider your 
suggestions in recommending appropriate changes to Congress.

DATES: Written comments must be received no later than October 18, 
2004.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
    EGRPRA Web site: http://www.EGRPRA.gov.

     Comments submitted at the Agencies' joint Web site will 
automatically be distributed to all the Agencies upon receipt. Comments 
received at the EGRPRA Web site and by other means will be posted on 
the Web site to the extent possible.
    Individual agency addresses: You are also welcome to submit 
comments to the Agencies at the following contact points (due to delays 
in paper mail delivery in the Washington area, commenters may prefer to 
submit their comments by alternative means):
    OCC: You may submit comments, identified by [docket 0418], by any 
of the following methods:
     E-mail: regs.comments@occ.treas.gov. Include [docket 0418] 
in the subject line of the message.
     Fax: (202) 874-4448.
     Mail: Public Information Room, Office of the Comptroller 
of the Currency,250 E Street, SW., Mailstop 1-5,Washington, DC 
20219,Attention: Docket .
    Public Inspection: You may inspect and photocopy comments at the 
Public Information Room. You can make an appointment to inspect the 
comments by calling (202) 874-5043.
    Board: You may submit comments, identified by Docket Number R-1206, 
by any of the following methods:
     Agency Web site: http://www.federalreserve.gov Follow the instructions for submitting comments at http://www.federalreserve.gov/generalinfo/foia/ProposedRegs.cfm.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 

Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     E-mail: regs.comments@federalreserve.gov. Include docket 
number in the subject line of the message.
     Fax: (202) 452-3819 or (202) 452-3102.
     Mail: Jennifer J. Johnson, Secretary, Board of Governors 
of the Federal Reserve System,20th Street and Constitution Avenue, 
NW.,Washington, DC 20551.
    All public comments are available from the Board's Web site at 
http://www.federalreserve.gov/generalinfo/foia/ProposedRegs.cfm as submitted, 

except as necessary for technical reasons. Accordingly, your comments 
will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information. 
Public comments may also be viewed electronically or in paper in Room 
MP-500 of the Board's Martin Building (20th and C Streets, NW.) between 
9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays.
    FDIC: You may submit comments, identified as EGRPRA burden 
reduction comments, by any of the following methods:
     http://www.fdic.gov/regulations/laws/federal/propose.html..     E-mail: comments@fdic.gov. Include ``EGRPRA burden 

reduction comment'' in the subject line of the message.
     Mail: Robert E. Feldman, Executive Secretary, Federal 
Deposit Insurance Corporation,550 17th Street, NW.,Washington, DC 
20429.
     Hand Delivery: Comments may be hand delivered to the guard 
station at the rear of the 550 17th Street Building (located on F 
Street) on business days between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.
    Public Inspection: You may inspect comments at the FDIC Public

[[Page 43348]]

Information Center, Room 100, 801 17th Street, NW., between 9 a.m. and 
4:30 p.m. on business days.
    OTS: You may submit comments, identified by ``No. 2004-35.'' by any 
of the following methods:
     E-Mail: regs.comments@ots.treas.gov. Include ``No. 2004-
35'' in the subject line of the message, and provide your name and 
telephone number.
     Fax: (202) 906-6518.
     Mail: Regulation Comments, Chief Counsel's Office, Office 
of Thrift Supervision,1700 G Street, NW.,Washington, DC 20552.
     Hand Delivery: Comments may be hand delivered to the 
Guard's Desk, East Lobby Entrance, 1700 G Street, NW., from 9 a.m. to 4 
p.m. on business days, Attention: Regulation Comments, Chief Counsel's 
Office.
    Public Inspection: OTS will post comments and the related index on 
the OTS Internet site at http://www.ots.treas.gov. In addition, you may 

inspect comments at the Public Reading Room, 1700 G Street, NW., by 
appointment. To make an appointment for access, call (202) 906-5922, 
send an e-mail to public.info@ots.treas.gov, or send a fax to (202) 
906-7755. (Please identify the material you would like to inspect to 
assist us in serving you.)

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 
    OCC:
     Stuart Feldstein, Assistant Director, Legislative and 
Regulatory Activities Division, (202) 874-5090.
     Heidi Thomas, Special Counsel, Legislative and Regulatory 
Activities Division, (202) 874-5090.
     Lee Walzer, Counsel, Legislative and Regulatory Activities 
Division, (202) 874-5090.
    Board:
     Patricia A. Robinson, Managing Senior Counsel, Legal 
Division, (202) 452-3005.
     Michael J. O'Rourke, Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 452-
3288.
     John C. Wood, Counsel, Division of Consumer and Community 
Affairs, (202) 452-2412.
     Arleen Lustig, Supervisory Financial Analyst, Division of 
Banking Supervision and Regulation, (202) 452-5259.
     For users of Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) 
only, contact (202) 263-4869.
    FDIC:
     Claude A. Rollin, Special Assistant to the Vice Chairman, 
(202) 898-8741.
     Steven D. Fritts, Associate Director, Division of 
Supervision and Consumer Protection, (202) 898-3723.
     Ruth R. Amberg, Senior Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 898-
3736.
     Thomas Nixon, Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 898-8766.
    OTS:
     Robyn Dennis, Manager, Thrift Policy, Supervision Policy, 
(202) 906-5751.
     Josephine Battle, Program Analyst, Thrift Policy, 
Supervision Policy, (202) 906-6870.
     Karen Osterloh, Special Counsel, Regulations and 
Legislation Division, Chief Counsel's Office, (202) 906-6639.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Overview of the EGRPRA Review and the Steps Taken So Far

    The Agencies \1\ are asking for your comments and suggestions on 
ways in which we can reduce regulatory burdens consistent with our 
statutory obligations. Today, we request your input to help us identify 
which regulatory requirements in the category ``Consumer Protection: 
Account/Deposit Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer Rules' are 
outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome. We list the rules in this 
category in a chart at the end of this notice. Please send us your 
recommendations at our Web site, http://www.EGRPRA.gov, or to one of 

the listed addresses.
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    \1\ The National Credit Union Administration has participated in 
planning the EGRPRA review but has issued, and will issue, requests 
for comment separately.
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    Today's request for comment is the third notice in our multi-year 
review of regulations for burden reduction required by section 2222 of 
EGRPRA.\2\ We described the EGRPRA review's requirements in our first 
EGRPRA notice. In summary, EGRPRA requires us to:
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    \2\ Public Law 104-208, Sept. 30, 1996, 12 U.S.C. 3311. We 
published our first notice in the Federal Register on June 16, 2003, 
at 68 FR 35589. We published our second notice on January 21, 2004, 
at 69 FR 2852. You may view the notices at our Web site: http://www.EGRPRA.gov
.

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     Categorize our regulations by type.
     Publish the regulations by category to request comments on 
which regulations contain requirements that are:

 Outdated,
 Unnecessary, or
 Unduly burdensome.

     Publish a summary of those comments.
     Eliminate unnecessary regulations to the extent 
appropriate.
     Report to Congress:

 Summarizing the significant issues raised and their relative 
merits
 Analyzing whether legislative change is required to reduce 
burden.

    The first publication cycle must be complete by September 2006.
    We have identified 13 categories of rules to implement our EGRPRA 
review. The categories are: Applications and Reporting; Banking 
Operations; Capital; Community Reinvestment Act; Consumer Protection: 
Lending Related Rules; Consumer Protection: Account/Deposit 
Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer Rules; Directors, Officers and 
Employees; International Operations; Money Laundering; Powers and 
Activities; Rules of Procedure; Safety and Soundness; and Securities. 
You may see the categories and the rules placed within them at our Web 
site http://www.EGRPRA.gov.

    We previously requested public comment about possible burden 
reduction in four categories of rules. Our June 16, 2003, notice 
requested comment on three categories: Applications and Reporting, 
Powers and Activities, and International Operations. Our January 21, 
2004, notice requested comment on Consumer Protection: Lending Related 
Rules. Today, we request comment on Consumer Protection: Account/
Deposit Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer Rules.
    We plan to publish one or more categories of rules approximately 
every six months between 2003 and 2006 and provide a 90-day comment 
period for each publication. As noted earlier, we must publish all our 
covered categories of rules for comment and review them by the end of 
September 2006.
    In addition to soliciting written comments, we held banker outreach 
meetings in Orlando, St. Louis, Denver, San Francisco, New York City, 
Nashville and Seattle to hear directly from the industry about ways the 
Agencies could reduce regulatory burden. More than 300 representatives 
from the industry have attended the outreach meetings. On February 20, 
2004, the Agencies also held a conference in the Washington, DC area 
for consumer groups to obtain their input on regulatory burden 
reduction. Another consumer group meeting was held in San Francisco on 
June 24, 2004. These meetings have helped focus our regulatory burden 
reduction efforts. We anticipate holding additional outreach events 
this year. You may learn more about the meetings and related 
recommendations at our EGRPRA Web site (http://www.EGRPRA.gov).

    We received 19 comments in response to the first notice and over 
590 to the second notice. The Agencies appreciate the response to our 
notices and the outreach meetings. The written comments and remarks at 
the meetings came from individuals, banks, savings

[[Page 43349]]

associations, holding companies, industry trade groups, and consumer 
and community groups. You may view the comments at our EGRPRA Web site 
(http://www.EGRPRA.gov). We are actively reviewing the feedback 

received about specific ways to reduce regulatory burden, as well as 
conducting our own analyses.
    On May 12, 2004, FDIC Vice Chairman John M. Reich testified about 
burden reduction before the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and 
Consumer Credit of the House Committee on Financial Services. On June 
22, 2004, Agency and industry leaders testified about regulatory reform 
before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. 
Agency leaders included Federal Reserve Board Governor Donald Kohn, 
FDIC Vice Chairman John M. Reich, NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson, OCC 
First Senior Deputy Comptroller and Chief Counsel Julie L. Williams, 
and OTS Chief Counsel John Bowman. We will continue to post information 
about our burden reduction efforts at our Web site.

II. Request for Comment on Consumer Protection: Account/Deposit 
Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer Rules

    Today, we are asking the public to identify the ways in which the 
Consumer Protection: Account/Deposit Relationships and Miscellaneous 
Consumer Rules may be outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome. We 
chose this category for publication relatively early in the series of 
requests for comment based on earlier comments from some industry 
representatives that the requirements imposed by the consumer 
protection regulations are among the most burdensome. As shown on the 
chart at the end of this notice, there are 11 regulations in this 
category.
    We encourage comments that address not only individual rules or 
requirements but also pertain to certain product lines. For example, in 
the case of a particular deposit product, are any disclosure 
requirements under one regulation inconsistent with or duplicative of 
requirements under another regulation? Do the rules require that you 
keep unnecessary records? A product line approach is consistent with 
EGRPRA's focus on how rules interact, and may be especially helpful in 
exposing redundant or potentially inconsistent regulatory requirements. 
We recognize that commenters using a product line approach may want to 
make recommendations about rules that are not in our current request 
for comment. They should do so since we designed the EGRPRA categories 
to stimulate creative approaches rather than limiting them.
    Specific issues to consider: While all comments are welcome, we 
specifically invite comment on the following issues:
    A. Need for statutory change. (1) Do any statutory requirements 
underlying the rules impose unnecessary, redundant, conflicting or 
unduly burdensome requirements? (2) Are there less burdensome 
alternatives?
    B. Need and purpose of the regulations. (1) Are the regulations 
consistent with the purposes of the statutes that they implement? (2) 
Have circumstances changed so that a rule is no longer necessary? (3) 
Do changes in the financial products and services offered to consumers 
suggest a need to revise certain regulations (or statutes)? (4) Do any 
of the regulations impose compliance burdens not required by the 
statutes they implement?
    C. General approach/flexibility. (1) Would a different general 
approach to regulating achieve statutory goals with less burden? (2) Do 
any of these rules impose unnecessarily inflexible requirements?
    D. Effect of the regulations on competition. Do any of the 
regulations or statutes create competitive disadvantages for insured 
depository institutions compared to the rest of the financial services 
industry or competitive disadvantages for one type of insured 
depository institution over another?
    E. Reporting, recordkeeping and disclosure requirements. (1) Which 
reporting, recordkeeping, or disclosure requirements impose the most 
compliance burdens? (2) Are any of the reporting or recordkeeping 
requirements unnecessary to demonstrate compliance with the law?
    F. Consistency and redundancy. (1) Are any of the requirements 
under one regulation inconsistent with or duplicative of requirements 
under another regulation? (2) If so, are the inconsistencies not 
warranted by the purposes of the regulations?
    G. Clarity. Are any of the regulations drafted unclearly?
    H. Burden on small insured institutions. We have particular 
interest in minimizing burden on small insured institutions (those with 
assets of $150 million or less). How could we amend these rules to 
minimize adverse economic impact on small insured institutions?
    The Agencies appreciate the efforts of all interested parties to 
help us eliminate outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome 
regulatory requirements.
BILLING CODE 4810-33-P; 6210-01-P; 6714-01-P; 6720-01-P

[[Page 43350]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TP20JY04.000


[[Page 43351]]


BILLING CODE 4810-33-C; 6210-01-C; 6714-01-C; 6720-01-C

    Dated: July 14, 2004.
John D. Hawke, Jr.,
Comptroller of the Currency.
    By order of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System 
on July 6, 2004.
Robert deV. Frierson,
DeputySecretary of the Board.

    Dated in Washington, DC, this 28 day of June, 2004.

    By order of the Board of Directors.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Valerie J. Best,
Assistant Executive Secretary.
    Dated: June 24, 2004.
James E. Gilleran,
Director, Office of Thrift Supervision.
[FR Doc. 04-16401 Filed 7-19-04; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4810-33-P








Last Updated 7/22/2004 communications@fdic.gov