By Chairman Matt Pinnell
It's fright night time. Most of us will be visited this evening by sugar-high children and Occupy Wall Street protesters looking for--what else--a handout. Either way, it's going to be frightening.
The real fright night, however, is playing out at our community banking institutions across America.
The Dodd-Frank bill passed in 2010 by a Democrat-controlled Senate and signed into law by President Obama slapped the biggest changes on our financial industry since the 1930's. It was a 2,300-page bill that has resulted in at least 243 new formal rulemakings by at least 11 federal agencies, including some new entities, and many of the new regulations apply directly to community banks.
We need to make sure the financial meltdown of 2008 doesn't happen again, but a 2,300-page bill that in turn hurts small business is unfortunately further proof that President Obama and his Democrat colleagues are clueless when it comes to private enterprise
Congressman James Lankford, who sits on the Budget Committee in Congress, has been a leading opponent of this frightening Democrat-sponsored legislation:
"The impetus for the Dodd-Frank financial reform was to ensure the failure of the housing market and the ensuing worldwide financial crisis of 2008 would never happen again, but the legislation ignored the systemic problems of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — the two broken entities that leave you and me on the hook for the tab. Instead, the main focus of the law adds hundreds of new rules to the private sector, including community banks in Oklahoma. Between July 21 and Dec. 31 of this year, community banks will have the unenviable task of implementing an additional 100 new rules and regulations."
We need to make sure the financial meltdown of 2008 doesn't happen again, but a 2,300-page bill that in turn hurts small business is unfortunately further proof that President Obama and his Democrat colleagues are clueless when it comes to private enterprise. The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) summed it up this way: "After loose monetary policy had combined with insane housing policy to create a financial crisis, the Democrats who ran Washington in 2009 and 2010 enacted myriad new rules that had nothing to do with easy money or housing.”
As Lankford further noted, all these new frightening rules are hindering the key function of banking: lending. "Every business needs access to capital so they can take risks, develop new plans and expand their work force." Instead of expanding workforces, just the opposite is taking place. Bank of America announced in September that the nation's largest bank will cut 30,000 jobs that were among the first of what the WSJ dubbed “The Dodd-Frank Layoffs.”
The backbone of our economy is built on small businesses, but this legislation is breaking that backbone at the absolute worst economic time. Frightening, I know.