WASHINGTON – With bipartisan support, the House Financial Services Committee today approved, in a bipartisan vote, H.R. 1309 – The Systemic Risk Designation Improvement Act of 2015 – to reform banking regulations so systemically important banks are designated using a multi-factored test rather than by arbitrary asset size.

Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer authored the legislation, which has 112 bipartisan cosponsors in the House. In May, the Senate approved similar legislation to reform banking regulations.

William Moore, the Executive Director of the Regional Bank Coalition issued the following statement:

“The House Financial Services Committee today voted to help the local economies of communities across the nation by approving a better framework under which the regulators can designate banks as systemically important. America’s regional banks are focused on their customers and small businesses — improved regulatory oversight will allow them to better meet their customers’ needs. An economic study released earlier this year found that a revision to the systemic risk threshold could increase lending to by as much as $14 to $20 billion.

“The coalition agrees with the majority of the House Financial Services Committee, both Democrats and Republicans, that voted today to change the way that Dodd-Frank handles systemic risk regulation. Our coalition appreciates the bipartisan discussion on Representative Maloney’s amendment, and we further appreciate — and echo Chairman Hensarling’s comments — that moving forward to floor consideration, there is bipartisan support to change regulations toward a business model approach rather than an arbitrary asset threshold.

“The coalition believes that the Luetkemeyer legislation offers the best solution and is one that gives regulators flexibility to focus on the risk that can impact the financial system. The current arbitrary asset level of $50 billion to measure risk is out of step with other tools regulators already have in place to measure risk. The multi-factored test approved by the Committee focuses on an institution’s complexity, global activity, size, interconnectedness, and substitutability – a better method to measure risk. With members from both parties and both chambers supporting this regulatory change, the Regional Bank Coalition will continue to press for the need to update these regulations and move the legislation forward toward floor debate and passage.”

About the Regional Bank Coalition: The Regional Bank Coalition is a group of regional banks that support regulation based on risk and business model to ensure safety and soundness. For more information, visit www.regionalbanks.org or follow on Twitter @rgnlbanks.