WASHINGTON – Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX), Chairman of the Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee, released the following statement after introducing H.R. 1266, a bill to reform and refocus the CFPB by changing the Bureau’s structure from Director-led to a bipartisan five-person commission appointed by the President:
“As we approach the five year anniversary of the Dodd-Frank Act, which created the CFPB, now is a good time to reflect on the Bureau’s impact on the American consumer. Over the last several years, the Bureau’s actions and record have proven it can’t function in a sustainable manner. Perhaps, more than any other Washington agency, the CFPB has demonstrated a lack of transparency and a lack of accountability. It has proven it is susceptible to political influence – bringing into question its independence.
“This is all the more troubling because the Bureau has an important mission: to protect consumers. I support consumer protection but we must ensure product choice, credit availability and cost of credit are considered before rushing to regulate. To better serve the American people, the Bureau must adopt a more balanced and consultative process to its rulemaking.
“Today, I have introduced a bill to change the Bureau’s structure from Director-led to a bipartisan five-person commission appointed by the President. Senator Elizabeth Warren, my former colleague Barney Frank, and even President Obama originally supported a board leadership structure. In fact, then-Professor Warren’s original idea for this agency proposed a bipartisan five-person commission. This bill is not an attempt to weaken the CFPB, it is a push to strengthen the CFPB and ensure greater consumer protections for the American people. I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Financial Services Committee and in Congress to move this much-needed bill forward.”
Neugebauer was joined by the following 20 original cosponsors:
Rep. Sean Duffy
Rep. Andy Barr
Rep. Frank Guinta
Rep. Bill Huizenga
Rep. Scott Garrett
Rep. David Schweikert
Rep. Keith Rothfus
Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer
Rep. Steve Pearce
Rep. Scott Tipton
Rep. Roger Williams
Rep. Dennis Ross
Rep. Ann Wagner
Rep. Bruce Poliquin
Rep. Lynn Westmoreland
Rep. French Hill
Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick
Rep. Robert Pittenger
Rep. Mia Love
Rep. Patrick McHenry
WASHINGTON – Rep. Randy Neugebauer (TX-19) released the following statement reacting to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to a Joint Meeting of Congress:
“Today, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu delivered a historic and powerful speech clearly outlining the threat the world faces from a nuclear Iran and radical Islam. I was honored to attend this speech and the United States must stand with Israel–our closest ally and friend in the Middle East. The Obama administration’s absence at today’s speech sent the wrong message to the world. I will continue to work with my colleagues in Congress to make sure that Iran’s dream of a nuclear weapon never becomes a reality.”
Neugebauer Votes Against President Obama’s Amnesty In January, the House passed legislation that I supported to fund the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) while defunding President Obama’s unconstitutional executive amnesty. Unfortunately, last week the Senate let a handful of Democrats prevent the House bill from moving forward. This was incredibly disappointing. Because of the Senate’s failure to act, the House voted twice on Friday night to extend DHS funding with the President’s amnesty. While a one-week extension passed, I voted against this because I believe we must use the power of the purse to defend the Constitution and use our system of checks and balances to hold the President accountable. I will continue the fight in Congress and urge our large Republican majority to defund the President’s amnesty.
Obamacare Subsidies Head to the Supreme Court On Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in King v. Burwell. This much anticipated case will determine whether Obamacare subsidies are legal in the states that didn’t set up their own exchanges or rely on the federal marketplace. It is my hope that the Supreme Court recognizes the illegality of these Obamacare subsidies and exposes another failure of Obamacare.Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to Address Congress Tomorrow, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will deliver a speech before a Joint Meeting of Congress. Prime Minister Netanyahu is expected to talk about the threat the world faces from a nuclear Iran. I stand with Israel and believe we must do everything we can to prevent a nuclear Iran from becoming a reality. Instead of objecting to this speech, the Obama administration should stand with our strongest ally in the Middle East.President Obama’s Executive Action to Ban AR-15 Bullets The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives recently revealed a framework proposing to ban certain types of 5.56 mm ammo. I am concerned that this proposed bullet ban is another attempt by the Obama administration to attack our Second Amendment rights. Last week, I joined a letter to the bureau demanding an explanation. I will continue to keep you updated and share their response.USDA Provides Farmers a One-Month Extension to Update Base Acres and Yield History I know many FSA offices are busy helping our West Texas producers update their yield history and reallocate base acres. I am pleased that the Department of Agriculture recognized this by delaying this deadline through the end of March. The March 31st deadline will now be both for these actions as well as elections for ARC or PLC for their operations. Even with this extension, I would encourage you to contact your FSA as soon as possible to ensure you have plenty of time to make these decisions. To read more about this from the USDA click here. Dana and I wish you a Happy Texas Independence Day!Read More
WASHINGTON – Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX), Chairman of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, today questioned Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen regarding the designation of certain financial institutions as “systemically important.” Specifically, he addressed concerns surrounding the application of enhanced prudential standards and the failure of the Federal Reserve to tailor those standards based on a financial institution’s complexity. Excerpts and full video below:
“Over the last few years there has been a lot of discussion about a financial institution being systemically important. Section 165 of Dodd-Frank sets an arbitrary threshold of $50 billion dollars. That designation then triggers enhanced prudential standards. As you and I have discussed, I’m not a big fan of the SIFI designation because I believe it’s an implicit designation of an institution being “Too Big to Fail.” The $50 billion threshold currently in place isn’t really working because it places an undue burden on mid-size banks that aren’t systemic to meet additional enhanced standards,” Rep. Neugebauer said.
Excerpts from Questioning:
Rep. Neugebauer: “If you think these standards are acceptable, would you be receptive to accepting a different arrangement where you use standards adopted by Basel and if the Fed has additional standards, so that everyone would know if they are in the [threshold] box our out of it?”
Chair Yellen: “I think trying to draw any line where you have some firms just below and some firms just above creates an element of arbitrariness. Wherever that line is, one retains that problem. It is important that the statutes enable us to differentiate and try to tailor rules to different firms of different complexities that are important. There are some things that we must apply to every firm over $50 billion.”
Rep. Neugebauer: “Statute doesn’t allow you now to draw that line. The line is drawn for you. Do I hear you saying that you think that is a flawed process?”
Chair Yellen: “I’m saying wherever you draw the line there will be a kind of arbitrariness that’s associated with it.”
Rep. Neugebauer: “You said it was arbitrary. Should we not draw a line?”
Chair Yellen: “Congress chose to draw a line and to apply enhanced standards to a certain a class of firms. What I am saying is that we absolutely recognize that within that large class of firms, they do differ in terms of their complexity and systemic footprint, and we need to tailor regulations that are appropriate and not identical for the largest and the ones that come closest to wherever that dividing line is.”
By Rep. Randy Neugebauer | Sunday, February 22, 2015
In 2008, our country began a roller coaster ride of epic proportions. We saw the collapse and taxpayer-backed bailouts of some of our nation’s largest financial institutions.
Foreclosures increased. Retirement savings evaporated. Unemployment skyrocketed. American consumers experienced a credit freeze. Main Street businesses closed.
Today, we are slowly climbing toward recovery, but too many of our fellow Americans continue to struggle to make ends meet. We must do better.
In the midst of the financial crisis, the Democrat-controlled Congress did not do the responsible thing. Instead of comprehensively studying the crisis, Democrats in Washington threw a blanket over the financial sector in the form of the Dodd-Frank Act.
Many of its prescriptions written to heal the financial sector, which include more than 400 new regulations, have created new conditions and problems. Dodd-Frank has brought bank consolidation, trimmed product lines and created the culture of “too small to succeed.”
For West Texas, Abilene’s Big Country region and our entire nation, this is a problematic trend.
After graduating from Texas Tech, I started my career as a community banker here in Lubbock. At the bank, I originated and sold mortgages and other loans to individuals and families. Those receiving these loans made up the fabric of our community, and this was truly community banking.
For many, these financial products helped them reach their goals and brought them one step closer to the American dream.
After working at the bank, I ventured off and became a small business owner. I got my start because the bank took a risk on me and gave me a loan to get my operations running. These financial products provided me the tools necessary to grow, it helped me hire more workers, and as I became more successful, it opened up the doors for greater opportunity to others in the area.
Today, as I look back on that business model and my own experiences, I see a very different landscape for community financial institutions and the health of our overall economy.
Across the 19th District, I meet with community bankers who can’t make loans they once did, and speak with those dreaming of owning their own business, who now can’t access the financial products that helped others get their start. A recent Harvard University study appropriately described what I once knew as community banking by stating, “Their competitive advantage is a knowledge and history of their customers and a willingness to be flexible.”
Dodd-Frank has disrupted that. Some in Washington have forgotten Main Street in their quest to take down Wall Street.
Last week, Massachusetts Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren spoke at a Senate Banking Committee hearing on regulatory burdens facing community financial institutions. She said community financial institutions are “doing better than ever after the regulations went into effect.”
As chairman of the subcommittee on financial institutions and consumer credit, I see a very different landscape facing our Main Street financial institutions.
Data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. shows that we lost nearly 1,000 community banks nationally between 2010 and 2014. Similarly, credit unions lost close to 1,000 institutions during the same time frame.
As FDIC Vice Chairman Thomas Hoenig stated last year, “There should be little doubt that regulatory burden contributes to the trend toward consolidation as smaller banks work to control costs and to survive within a highly regulated industry.”
Losing our community banks and credit unions is a long term threat to communities across the country — especially rural and semi-urban areas such as the Texas 19th Congressional district.
Data shows more than 70 percent of agricultural loans and over 50 percent of small business loans are made by community banks. I worry without the regulatory flexibility to serve local needs, banks and credit unions will stop offering products or consolidate.
A Mercatus Center study found because of the Dodd-Frank Act, some banks have already stopped offering residential mortgages, home equity lines of credit, overdraft protection and credit cards to their customers. Other banks expect to stop offering these services in the future. This would be devastating for individuals and families in the 19th District
When I look at these trends, I think about those folks barely making ends meet. I worry regulations, often advertised as consumer protections, are actually choices coming from regulators in Washington that will limit the choices and opportunity of those on Main Street. Consumer protection is important in the financial marketplace, but we must ensure product choice, credit availability and cost of credit are considered before rushing to regulate.
We have already seen a direct result of Dodd-Frank’s unintended consequences on our fellow West Texans that required commonsense reform. Included in my legislation to reform the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act — the first bill signed into law this Congress — was a provision to provide some initial relief from Dodd-Frank for our farmers, ranchers, and small business owners.
Dodd-Frank made it difficult for these “end users” to manage their business risk and protect their companies from market fluctuations. Individuals on Main Street did not cause the financial crisis, but they are certainly feeling these unintended consequences.
On the Financial Services Committee, my top priority is regulatory relief for our Main Street institutions and to spur the engines of economic growth. We must do this from Main Street up, not with more regulation and failed policies from Washington.
RANDY NEUGEBAUER IS THE U.S. REPRESENTATIVE FOR TEXAS’ 19TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT, WHICH INCLUDES LUBBOCK.
By Zachary Warmbrodt | February 17, 2015
Randy Neugebauer is bored with messaging.
The West Texas conservative is a leading member of the House Financial Services Committee, which in Republican hands has approved numerous bills in recent years that would have eased the bite of financial regulations.
But one after another, the bills faced certain death in the Democratically controlled Senate, where party leaders dismissed the proposals as attempts to weaken the 2010 Dodd-Frank law.
Now, with Republicans in control of the Senate, Neugebauer says he wants to craft bills that can be passed by Congress and sent to the president’s desk — not just send a message on where Republicans stand with regard to overseeing the financial services industry.
But that will mean crafting legislation that can garner some bipartisan support in order to get past potential filibusters led by Democrats in the Senate.
This has Neugebauer, who is taking the gavel of a subcommittee overseeing bank regulation and consumer protection, taking stock of potential areas where Democrats and Republicans can work together.
“What I want to do is hopefully get everybody thinking about actually making things become law,” the former banker and home builder said in an interview in his Capitol Hill office Friday.
First on Neugebauer’s agenda is legislation that would revise regulations for small and regional banks.
Neugebauer said a “good warmup” was his work on a terrorism risk insurance bill that became the first piece of legislation President Barack Obama signed into law in January.
Neugebauer introduced the original draft of the legislation in the House. While the finished product negotiated between House Republicans and Senate Democrats was significantly different from what he first put on paper, Neugebauer said he learned lessons as he tried to build consensus around the bill.
“I’ve got a little taste in my mouth of getting something done, and it tasted pretty good,” he said.
In the interview, Neugebauer discusses the top items on his agenda, how to define a big bank, how he’s “all for capital” and where bipartisan compromise may be possible.
What follows are excerpts of the interview edited for length and clarity.
You’re chairing a subcommittee that has oversight of banking rules and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. What is the first thing on your agenda for the subcommittee in terms of hearings and legislation?
We’ve broken down what we want to accomplish into three areas.
One is regulatory reform. We threw this big blanket over the entire financial market, and we’ve seen some unintended consequences.
Secondly is … doing consumer protection in a way that it’s good for the consumer and not taking away consumer choices, but expanding their choices while at the same time making sure that we’re doing proper oversight.
The third thing is we are looking at cyber and data security. …
I would say probably one of the priorities is going to be looking at some regulatory reform for our Main Street lending institutions.
Does that mean community banks?
Community banks and credit unions.
Are there any specific proposals you’re considering?
There are a lot of different ideas out there. One is the SIFI [systemically important financial institution] designation, changing the floor on that, and we’ve been looking at a lot of different proposals that are out there, and there’s been even talk from former authors of Dodd-Frank that maybe that threshold is too low and could be raised.
That’s the $50 billion asset level, where if you’re above it you face enhanced prudential standards?
Do you lean toward raising the number or doing away with the threshold and replacing it with an activities-based test?
One of the things about setting a number is you literally pick winners and losers.
My current thinking is, I’d rather give a financial institution the ability to say, OK, these are the metrics — if I change my business model or if I decide to stay in this business or get out of this business, I understand where I fit in the scheme of things.
When you set a number, then you’re really forcing an entity to shed assets. Or somebody grows and when they get closer to the ceiling or to the floor, they start to throttle their business down. I think there’s a little bit of a disincentive there. I may be leaning more to looking at some standards.
We’re hearing from financial reform advocates and Democrats who say regulators have the tools to tailor this part of Dodd-Frank and that amending it could create some new risks or might lead to missing some risks. Are you anticipating this is going to be a difficult lift?
What we’ve heard from some of the regulators is they think there needs to be some changes made. What we’re going to be talking about then is the best way to do that. We would listen to the regulators. What we’re trying to do is to accomplish what Dodd-Frank was really structured to do, and that is to make sure that banks are healthy. But, by the same token, trying to apply all those standards universally though the banking system, I don’t think, is good policy.
So that proposal would be in the initial group you were talking about with legislation that would help community banks and credit unions? Because that helps the bigger, regional banks.
Some of the smaller holding companies would be affected by that. What we’re really doing right now is filtering through a couple dozen bills that were passed in the last Congress out of the committee, that were passed with bipartisan support, and ascertaining, is that support still there? And really taking the easier bills, marking those up in committee in the next month or so and taking those to the House floor …
I met with [subcommittee ranking member William Lacy] Clay today and we’ve been talking about beginning that dialogue. We talked to [Senate Banking Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection Subcommittee Chairman Pat] Toomey about sending some stuff over to them.
My sense is from the first hearing they had over in the Senate, I think we’re on the same page, that the community banks and the community credit unions are both on our initial thrust here for a while.
As you start getting to more complex stuff, then obviously those will be difficult lifts.
You mentioned you’re filtering through proposals from the last Congress. It seems like the dynamic around those bills has changed since the fiscal 2015 spending bill, which eased a Dodd-Frank derivatives rule, and the terrorism risk insurance bill, which included another derivatives rule exemption.
Are you trying to be more pragmatic and say “where is an area we can get real bipartisan support” rather than just sending messages and having those bills die in the Senate?
I’m going to spend my efforts on things I think we can actually make law. We’ll obviously have some issues where there probably may not be support to necessarily get those passed, but it doesn’t keep us from talking about those, marking those bills up, seeing if we can pass them in the House, understanding that we may or may not get a warm reception for those. But I don’t think you can start saying I’m going to give up on some of the issues, but there is some real need for some regulatory relief out there and we’re going to try to deliver some.
Is there one example of something under your jurisdiction where you think you can work with Democrats and send something to the president that he would actually sign?
I think so, but it’s hard to predict what the president actually will sign. I don’t want to be vague here, but we’re kind of sorting through those bills right now. … We’re going to be developing that list here pretty quickly and it will be pretty transparent where we’re headed. You can go back and look at some of those bills that passed with pretty bipartisan support in the committee, and I think those would be ones that are going to be on our list.
What about proposals that would be seen as helping out the bigger institutions? Is that something the committee’s going to try to tackle?
What we’re trying to ascertain right now is prioritizing it. Our priority right now seems to be more focused on the smaller ones. The big folks have a little more latitude to do some things.
In the area of the big banks, one of the things we are going to have on our radar scope is the harmonization of these capital standards, trying to impose European standards on our financial institutions at the same time of us putting another layer on there. I am all for capital, but I think we have the strongest financial institutions in the world, and I don’t think we need to be importing bank regulations from Europe. I think we need to be exporting them to Europe. So, I want to make sure that we’re treating both our bank and our nonbank financial institutions appropriately.
This is your third subcommittee chairmanship on Financial Services. Would you ever like to run the full committee?
That wouldn’t be a bad job, but I’m very happy with the job I have right now. I’m very blessed. I was the vice ranking member, then I chaired oversight, I chaired housing and insurance and now I’m chairing financial institutions. It’s something I love because this is really my background. This is what I did. I’ve been a banker. I’ve been in the real estate business. … One of my sons is in the private equity business. The other one’s in the energy business. The Neugebauers are business and finance kind of people. So, we really feel comfortable here.
1424 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Randy Neugebauer proudly represents the 19th Congressional District of Texas, which stretches across 29 counties. He has offices in the cities of Abilene, Big Spring and Lubbock.
As one of the most conservative Members of Congress, Randy works to keep Washington accountable to hardworking American taxpayers by requiring commonsense spending and borrowing limits.
Randy was raised in West Texas, and he is a voice for traditional Texan values in Washington. Randy graduated from Texas Tech in 1972 with a degree in accounting. He went on to work in real estate management, eventually starting his own land development company.
As a small business owner, Randy knows first-hand the dedication and commitment it takes to own and manage a successful company. He also knows how government regulations can quickly deplete the resources of a small business, causing hard times for families and communities. Randy brings this businessman’s perspective to Congress where he advocates for reduced spending, fiscal discipline, free markets, and limited government.
Randy serves on three committees in the House of Representatives, where he can work on legislation that directly benefits his constituents. He is a senior member of the House Agriculture Committee and the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee. Additionally, he serves as the Chairman of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance.
As Housing and Insurance Subcommittee Chairman, he’s working to reform the housing market, cut regulatory burdens, and shift risk away from American taxpayers and back into the private sector.
Randy’s legislative initiatives include eliminating wasteful federal spending, improving crop insurance, and supporting diverse domestic energy sources. He continues to work on legislation that will empower the constituents of the 19th Congressional District.
Randy’s support of conservative principles has been recognized by many groups and organizations. He has received the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Spirit of Enterprise Award, the Club for Growth Defender of Economic Freedom Award, and the Taxpayer’s Friend Award from the National Taxpayers Union. He has earned a 100% lifetime rating by National Right to Life. He has been recognized by National Journal as one of the six most conservative members of the U.S. House of Representatives. In addition, Randy serves as an Assistant Republican Whip to House Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy.
Randy is married to his high school sweetheart, Dana, who is a Ropesville native. Together they have two sons, two daughters-in-law, and are the proud grandparents of three boys and one girl.
Retweeted by randyneugebauer
Retweeted by randyneugebauer
Retweeted by randyneugebauer
Retweeted by randyneugebauer
When President Obama announced his executive amnesty in November of 2014 I pledged to defend the Constitution, hold the President accountable,
Today, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu delivered an historic and powerful speech clearly outlining the threat the world faces from a nuclear
This morning, I’m looking forward to attending Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s address to Congress. Prime Minister Netanyahu is expected
Happy Texas Independence Day!
It's an honor to be invited to speak at CPAC. I'm looking forward to joining fellow conservatives tomorrow morning to discuss our fight for religious