[Federal Register: February 3, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 22)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
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.
DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
12 CFR Chap. I
[Docket No. 05-01]
FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM
12 CFR Chap. II
[Docket No. OP-1220]
FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION
12 CFR Chap. III
DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
Office of Thrift Supervision
12 CFR Chap. V
Request for Burden Reduction Recommendations; Money Laundering,
Safety and Soundness, and Securities 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
ACTION: Notice of regulatory review; request for comments.
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reviewing our regulations to identify outdated, unnecessary, or unduly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 Money Laundering, Safety and Soundness, and Securities.
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; whether the cost of
compliance associated with reporting, recordkeeping, and disclosure
requirements, particularly on small institutions, is justified; 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 May 4, 2005.
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. 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 05-01], by any
of the following methods:
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Include [docket 05-
01] 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 OP-
1220, 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: email@example.com. 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
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: firstname.lastname@example.org. 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
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
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. 2005-02.'' by any
of the following methods:
Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
E-Mail: email@example.com. Include ``No. 2005-
02'' in the subject line of the message, and provide your name and
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
Public Inspection: OTS will post comments and the related index on
the OTS Internet site at http://www.ots.treas.gov/pagehtml.cfm?catNumber=67&an=1.
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
firstname.lastname@example.org, or send a fax to (202) 906-7755. (Please
identify the material you would like to inspect to assist us in serving
you.) OTS schedules appointments on business days between 10 a.m. and 4
p.m. In most cases, appointments will be available the next business
day following the date OTS receives a request.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
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.
Patricia A. Robinson, Managing Senior Counsel, Legal
Division, (202) 452-3005.
Michael J. O'Rourke, Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 452-
John C. Wood, Counsel, Division of Consumer and Community
Affairs, (202) 452-2412.
Kevin H. Wilson, Supervisory Financial Analyst, Division
of Banking Supervision and Regulation, (202) 452-2362.
For users of Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD)
only, contact (202) 263-4869.
Claude A. Rollin, Special Assistant to the Vice Chairman,
Steven D. Fritts, Associate Director, Division of
Supervision and Consumer Protection, (202) 898-3723.
Ruth R. Amberg, Senior Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 898-
Thomas Nixon, Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 898-8766.
Glenn Gimble, Senior Project Manager, Thrift Policy,
Supervision Policy, (202) 906-7158.
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.
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 three categories--Money Laundering,
Safety and Soundness, and Securities--are outdated, unnecessary, or
unduly burdensome. We list the rules in these categories 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.
\1\ The National Credit Union Administration has participated in
planning the EGRPRA review but has issued, and will issue, requests
for comment separately.
Today's request for comment is the fourth 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:
\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; our second notice on January 21, 2004, at 69 FR
2852; and our third notice on July 20, 2004, at 69 FR 43347. You may
view the notices at our Web site, http://www.EGRPRA.gov.
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
Report to Congress: summarizing the significant issues
raised and their relative merits, and 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
We previously requested public comment about possible burden
reduction in five 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. Our July 20, 2004, notice requested comment on Consumer
Protection: Account/Deposit Relationships and Miscellaneous Consumer
Rules. Today, we request comment on rules related to Money Laundering,
Safety and Soundness, and Securities.
We plan to continue 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, Seattle, and Chicago to hear directly from the industry
about ways the Agencies could reduce regulatory burden. More than 400
representatives from the industry have attended the outreach meetings.
The Agencies have also held three outreach meetings with over 100
participants for representatives of consumer and community groups to
obtain their input on regulatory burden reduction. The consumer
meetings were held in Arlington, Virginia; San Francisco; and Chicago.
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, about 560
to the second notice, and over 100 to the third 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 associations, holding companies, industry trade groups,
and consumer and community groups. You may view the comments at our
EGRPRA Web site, http://www.EGRPRA. We are actively reviewing the
feedback received about specific ways to reduce regulatory burden, as
well as conducting our own analyses.
In addition, Congress considered various legislative proposals to
reduce burden on the financial services industry in 2004.
Representatives of the Agencies and industry leaders testified before
congressional committees about these legislative reform proposals and
other ideas for reducing burden on the financial services industry.\3\
We will continue to post information about legislative and regulatory
reform efforts on our Web site.
\3\ 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, 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 E.
Bowman. On August 27, Senator Mike Crapo, who is leading a financial
services regulatory reform effort for the Senate Banking Committee,
released a matrix detailing more than 130 burden reduction proposals
that were made in the June 2004 hearing.
II. Request for Comment on Money Laundering, Safety and Soundness, and
Today, we are asking the public to identify ways in which the rules
related to Money Laundering, Safety and Soundness, and Securities may
be outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome. As shown on the chart
at the end of this notice, there are 28 regulations in these
categories. The Agencies note that other non-banking agencies, such as
the Department of Treasury under the Bank Secrecy Act, have issued
rules within these three categories that apply to our regulated
institutions. Some of the rules of these other agencies are beyond our
jurisdiction. However, to the extent that we receive comments raising
significant issues about these related rules, we will identify the
issues in our Report to Congress and make those comments available to
the appropriate agencies.
We encourage comments that address not only individual rules or
requirements but also pertain to certain product lines. For example, in
the case of an institution's securities activities, are any of the
reporting, recordkeeping or other requirements of one regulation
inconsistent with or duplicative of the requirements under another
regulation? 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
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). Are there appropriate ways to amend
these rules to minimize adverse economic impact on small insured
The Agencies appreciate the efforts of all interested parties to
help us eliminate outdated, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome
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Dated: January 13, 2005.
Julie L. Williams,
Acting Comptroller of the Currency.
By order of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
on January 26, 2005.
Jennifer J. Johnson,
Secretary of the Board.
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
By order of the Board of Directors.
Dated at Washington, DC, this 18th day of January, 2005.
Robert E. Feldman,
Dated: January 25, 2005.
James E. Gilleran,
Director, Office of Thrift Supervision.
[FR Doc. 05-2079 Filed 2-2-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4810-33-C