IBAT News

Closer to Reg Relief


Last week, the United States House of Representatives passed Chairman Jeb Hensarling’s signature regulatory relief legislation, the Financial CHOICE Act, by a margin of 233-186. 

All eyes now turn to the Senate Banking Committee, which is working on its own regulatory relief legislation. 

Texas’ own Scott Heitkamp, ValueBank Texas President and CEO and current ICBA Chairman, appeared before the Senate Banking Committee last week, testifying about the harmful effect the Dodd-Frank Act has had on credit availability for worthy borrowers. 

“Overregulation has created a very tight credit box by choking off community banks’ capacity to take on and manage reasonable credit risk,” Heitkamp said. “Often people with lower credit scores and lower income, or newly established small businesses, who are still creditworthy are being denied credit in today’s environment.”

Heitkamp further highlighted provisions of ICBA’s Plan for Prosperity, supported by IBAT, and the positive effects those provisions would have on economic growth.

“We are optimistic that the Senate will take up a relief package for community banks by the fall of this year,” said IBAT President and CEO Chris Williston. “The House Financial Services Committee, and Chairman Hensarling in particular, have shown great leadership in keeping this issue on the front burner. We look forward to seeing this done for the good of the industry and the American economy.”

Staff contact: Chris Williston, cwilliston@ibat.org, 512-474-6889

Special Session


Governor Greg Abbott announced last week that he is calling a Special Session, beginning July 18. In unveiling an ambitious list of issues to be addressed by the Legislature in a 30-day session, Abbott made it clear that the first order of business would be to pass a “Sunset Safety Net” bill to keep the Texas Medical Board and several other agencies in existence. Once that critical task is completed, he committed to adding 19 other issues to the agenda.

While nothing on the call would appear to directly impact community banking, we will be monitoring the proceedings to ensure your interests are protected in this whirlwind process.

As a reminder, registration is open for IBAT’s 85th Texas Legislature recap webinar, which will be held June 27, 10-11:30 a.m. We look forward to sharing a multitude of issues emanating from the just-completed session with you and your staff.

Staff contact: Steve Scurlock, sscurlock@ibat.org, 512-275-2226

Baker Market Update: June 12, 2017


A crazy week. But these days, crazy weeks have become more the norm and less the exception. With Theresa May’s government leaking oil, the FBI leaking memos, and the European Central Bank maybe leaking accommodation, a triple-witching of mostly non-financial events has dominated the news. The craziness extended to financial markets as positive expectations rallied equity prices and negative expectations induced a rally in bond prices. Something doesn’t look right.

Read More in the Baker Market Update

Top Webinars


Throughout the first five months of 2017, IBAT members have been focused on education with strong webinar participation. If you’re looking for additional training for your staff, check out the most popular webinars in May, now available on demand:

  • Auditing Call Reports: Compliance, Regulator Expectations & Best Practices
  • Security Officer Reports to the Board: Fulfilling Your Annual Requirement
  • Credit Analyst Training Part 1: Basic Small Business Lending
  • Account Documentation Series: Nonresident Alien Accounts: Opening, Tax ID Numbers, IRS Issues & More
  • HMDA Data Collection Rules: Preparing for the Extensive January 1, 2018 Changes
  • Revisiting TRID Line-by-Line Part 1: Loan Estimate

As always, you can view the full lineup of recorded or upcoming webinars by visiting our webinar homepage.

Staff contact: Julie Courtney, jcourtney@ibat.org, 512-275-2227

Legal Ease: June 8, 2017


From the IBAT Compliance Forum: If we are modifying a balloon mortgage with a modification and increasing the note rate, I thought we had to consider it a refinance. Can we do that? Is it a refinance?

Learn the answer here.

Staff contact: Kelly Goulart, kgoulart@ibat.org, 512-275-2231

Legal Ease is chosen from questions received through the IBAT Compliance Adviser Helpline, available to IBAT members free of charge at 1-800-749-4228 or kgoulart@ibat.org. IBAT members can also read and/or initiate discussions with other community bankers in the IBAT Compliance Forum. The Legal Ease archives are also available on IBAT2GO, the official IBAT mobile app.

Five* Star Award Winners


IBAT appreciates Five*Star engagement of the following IBAT associate members that qualified for the 2017 Five*Star Award:

Tier 1 (1-10 employees)

Aporia Solutions
Catalyst Financial Company
Granville Group
Haltner HAI, LLC
J. Keith Hughey Company
Kennedy Sutherland, LLP

Tier 2 (11-199 employees)

Advantage Health Plans Trust
The Baker Group
Bank Compensation Consulting
The Bankers Bank
CalTech
ComCo Systems
Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
Fenimore, Kay, Harrison & Ford, LLP
Garland Heart Management Group

Tier 3 (200+ employees)

BKD, LLP
Briggs & Veselka Co.
Deluxe/
Deluxe Strategic Sourcing
Diebold Nixdorf
Fitech Payments
Glory Global Solutions
PULSE, A Discover Company


Congratulations to The Baker Group, the 2017 Five*Star Legacy Award winner. We would like to thank our member banks that participated in the selection process for 2017 IBAT Five*Star Award recipients.

Congratulations to the 2017 winners:

  • Kennedy Sutherland, LLP (Tier 1)
  • CalTech (Tier 2)
  • PULSE, A Discover Company (Tier 3)

The awards will be presented during the general session at IBAT's 32nd Annual Leadership Conference on Friday, June 23, 2017 at Horseshoe Bay Resort. We hope to see you there!

Staff contact: Darlene Revers, drevers@ibat.org, 512-275-2217

IBAT's 85th Texas Legislature


Don’t forget to register for IBAT’s 85th Texas Legislature recap webinar on June 27, 10-11:30 a.m. As is customary, we will provide a thorough recap of legislation and issues emanating from the Session that will impact your bank.

Please join us for this free program from the comfort of your office, and we encourage your staff to sit in as well.

Register here today. You’ll receive both audio and web instructions prior to the webinar.

Staff contact: Steve Scurlock, sscurlock@ibat.org, 512-275-2226

Cybersecurity Tool


The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released an update to the Cybersecurity Assessment Tool. The FFIEC revised its IT Examination Handbook with updated Information Security and Management booklets. The updated tool also provides additional response options, which allow financial institutions to include supplementary behaviors, practices and processes to support their cybersecurity activity assessment.

The revised assessment tool and related information can be found here

Staff contact: Steve Scurlock, sscurlock@ibat.org, 512-275-2226

Consumer Tips


IBAT's June Consumer Tips article looks at various ways to save money when traveling abroad. While international travel is a dream for many, the cost of doing so means it might never be a reality. These tips address how to save on many aspects of travel, including airfare, lodging, food, entertainment and more.

Please feel free to share the June Consumer Tips with your bank customers.

Staff contact: Lindsey Gehrig, lgehrig@ibat.org, 512-275-2215

Cooper Op-Ed


Texas Department of Banking Commissioner Charles Cooper penned his thoughts about the need for regulatory reform in an op-ed that has been published in several newspapers, including the San Antonio Express-News and Houston Chronicle. In the piece titled “Making Federal Reforms Work for Our Communities,” he focuses on the need for community bank regulatory relief.

The Commissioner writes in his op-ed:

“Perhaps the best place to start is where there is bipartisan support. In my recent visit to Washington, D.C., I met with members of the Texas delegation and others in Congress. The one unifying topic—regulatory right-sizing for community banks.”

He then goes on to highlight House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling’s Financial CHOICE Act that would right-size regulations for a post-crisis environment. This comprehensive regulatory reform bill is set for a House vote this week. It passed the committee last month on a 34-26 vote. An executive summary of the bill can be found here. Special thanks to the Commissioner for sharing his expert opinion and to Chairman Hensarling for championing much-needed, long-overdue regulatory reform for community banks.

We highly encourage you to share Commissioner Cooper’s op-ed with your local newspaper. Please contact Lindsey Gehrig if you have questions, need assistance or would like the Commissioner’s head shot to submit with the op-ed.

Staff contact: Chris Williston, cwilliston@ibat.org, 512-474-6889

IBAT Supports Lawsuit


Last week, IBAT joined ICBA and community banking associations from around the country in signing on to an amicus curiae brief supporting the American Bankers Association’s (ABA) lawsuit against the National Credit Union Administration’s (NCUA) proposed amendment to credit union field-of-membership rules.

The brief focuses on the liberal interpretations of federal law employed by the NCUA that would expand the scope and ability of credit unions to operate beyond “localized communities of interest.”

In IBAT’s comment letter on the rule, IBAT President and CEO Chris Williston spoke out against the seemingly endless expansion of credit union power provided to the industry by the NCUA.

“If the NCUA cannot or will not narrowly interpret the limits Congress placed on these tax-exempt entities to keep them focused on their statutory purpose, then, yes, credit unions should either pay their fair share of income tax or convert to bank charters,” Williston said. 

Check future issues of IBAT’s Bottom Line newsletter for more coverage of ABA’s lawsuit against NCUA.

Staff contact: Chris Williston, cwilliston@ibat.org, 512-474-6889

2017 BOCB Awards


It’s that time of year – time to start thinking about what your bank will submit for the 2017 Best of Community Banking (BOCB) Awards competition. This marks the 26th year of celebrating the outstanding accomplishments of IBAT member banks.

The BOCB program recognizes the vital role your bank plays in your community. It is an opportunity to showcase and honor the best-of-the-best efforts of IBAT members in four categories:

  • architectural design,
  • community service,
  • financial education and
  • marketing.

As always, all entries will be displayed at the Annual IBAT Convention in September at the Fairmont Hotel in downtown Austin. Gold award winners will be recognized during the BOCB Awards luncheon on Monday, September 11.

The entry deadline is Friday, June 30. The BOCB brochure and entry form were mailed last week so please be on the lookout for these important materials. We can’t wait to learn about the extraordinary programs IBAT banks have taken on throughout the past year! 

Staff contact: Lindsey Gehrig, lgehrig@ibat.org, 512-275-2215

Baker Market Update: June 5, 2017


It’s the first Friday of the month, and this morning’s Jobs Report was a real covfefe. It might look okay if observed from a galloping horse, but even a cursory scratch of the surface tells a different story. Yes, the Unemployment Rate fell by a tenth to 4.3%, but we’re all too familiar with the biggest reason for that; the Labor Force Participation Rate fell to 62.7% from 62.9%. The paltry addition of 138k to Non - Farm Payrolls continues the deceleration of job growth, the number of folks not-in-the-labor-force grew by 608k, the non-institutionalized civilian population grew by 179k, the civilian labor force fell by 429k, and the employment/population ratio dropped to 60% from 60.2%. But hey, this is the lowest Unemployment Rate since 2001, so happy days are here again!

Read More in the Baker Market Update

HDMA Comment Letter


Last week, IBAT filed comments on proposed amendments to data reporting requirements under the Home Mortgage Disclosure act. In the comment letter filed by IBAT President and CEO Chris Williston, IBAT requested that the CFPB adopt changes to address ambiguities and misunderstandings in the treatment of:

  • Multifamily loans,
  • Purchased loans,
  • Land contracts and leases,
  • Final action and
  • Safe harbor for use of geocoding tool.

The letter went on to express concern that “the CFPB has not provided any compelling evidence that the collection and disclosure of [many additional data points] provides benefits that outweigh the significant burden it will place on financial institutions and the risk it will pose to the security of the financial information contained therein.”

Staff contact: Kelly Goulart, kgoulart@ibat.org, 512-275-2231

CBA + BOCB Award


ICBA is seeking nominations for its 2017 National Community Bank Service Awards, which recognize community banks that help sustain and improve their communities through community service and volunteer efforts. Banks may be nominated or can nominate themselves, and submissions are due this Friday, June 2. Additional information can be found here.

If you plan to submit an IBAT Best of Community Banking (BOCB) Award entry in the community service or financial literacy category, it could also meet the requirements for the ICBA Community Bank Service Award. While the BOCB deadline is just under a month away—due Friday, June 30—this is incentive to get your bank’s award entry together this week to meet ICBA’s deadline!

Staff contact: Lindsey Gehrig, lgehrig@ibat.org, 512-275-2215

Legal Ease: June 1, 2017


Our applicant is an attorney who wants to add a large office and reception area on to his home to work out of full time. Is this application subject to TRID?

Learn the answer here.

Staff contact: Kelly Goulart, kgoulart@ibat.org, 512-275-2231

Legal Ease is chosen from questions received through the IBAT Compliance Adviser Helpline, available to IBAT members free of charge at 1-800-749-4228 or kgoulart@ibat.org. IBAT members can also read and/or initiate discussions with other community bankers in the IBAT Compliance Forum. The Legal Ease archives are also available on IBAT2GO, the official IBAT mobile app.

Supreme Court Opinion


The United States Supreme Court issued a very short opinion in Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, concluding that venue for patent cases was limited by the patent law, which has its own venue section. The Supreme Court held that this venue provision is not preempted by the general venue statute. Repeatedly the opinion notes that a domestic corporation “resides” where it is incorporated. Of course, this may make Delaware the new go-to venue since many corporations are incorporated there!

Further, the statute specifies that an action may be brought “in the judicial district where the defendant resides, or where the defendant has committed acts of infringement and has a regular and established place of business.” (28 USC sec. 1400(b).) So online transactions wouldn’t expand jurisdiction. Also, it appears the law means that a business incorporated in Texas could be sued in the specific district where it resides—not the entire state. Otherwise, that underscored language would be surplusage.

Since the Eastern District of Texas is the rocket docket, it is important to be able to argue that a particular case must be brought where the infringing party actually resides in the state of Texas. Otherwise, Texas corporations will still be in the rocket docket for patent cases.

Staff contact: Karen Neeley, kneeley@kslawllp.com, 210-802-4631

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