WASHINGTON -- Senator-elect Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), then-ranking member of the Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee, has requested a Government Accountability Office study of several issues concerning the cost of banks to the American taxpayers.
Sanders noted, "Since the Savings and Loan crisis of the 1980s and the enactment of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) the federal government has provided billions of dollars in aid and benefits to the banking and benefits to the banking and thrift industries, at a time when they continue to see quarter after quarter of record profits and consumers see more and higher bank fees."
He listed out nine separate multiple part questions, including:
o What was the total cost of the Savings and Loan bailout of the 1980s? How much of that was paid for the thrift industry? What was the total cost to the American taxpayers?
o What other subsidies and benefits has the federal government provided to the banking and thrift industries since 1990? What tax breaks and avoidance measures do banks and thrifts use to avoid paying taxes to the federal government? What is the annual and total dollar benefit of these? Who are the top beneficiaries?
o How many "Subchapter S" banks are there and how large are they? Have there been changes that have facilitated the growth of the number of Subchapter S banks since 1990? Are there any in the last five years that paid no income taxes in a given year, but received a tax refund for that year? What is the estimated revenue lost to the federal government in 2005 by banks incorporated as "Subchapter S" status as compared to them not receiving the tax benefits of subchapter S status? What percentage of "Subchapter S" banks failed to receive an "Outstanding" rating in their 2005 CRA exam?
NAFCU had a hand in the request, which was dated July 12, opening day of NAFCU's Annual Conference. --email@example.com