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WASHINGTON-Two key Democrats are calling for a hearing on the interagency amendments to the Community Reinvestment Act regulations. The proposal would raise the maximum size bank eligible for streamlined CRA examination from $250 million to $500 million and eliminate the threshold for an affiliate of a holding company. According to House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Congressman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the Ranking Member of the Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee, the proposal would also permit banks to exclude lending activities of certain affiliates from CRA examinations and create a vague and weak anti-predatory lending standard. “The regulators’ proposals to cut back on CRA goes in precisely the wrong direction,” Frank said. “For example, with financial industry consolidation going forward so rapidly, allowing institutions to exclude large parts of their activities from CRA requirements is an assault on the principles behind the Act.” The banking trade associations have supported the amendments and asked that they be taken further.

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