Community Bankers Association of Illinois

YOUR IMMEDIATE ACTION NEEDED!
Interchange fee control provision puts your community bank debit card program at risk!

Interchange fee control provision puts your community bank debit card program at risk! Last week the U.S. Senate approved (S. 3217) the Financial Regulatory Reform Bill which includes a provision of great concern to community banks. In the debate process, the bill was amended to direct the Federal Reserve Board to limit fees that merchants pay when customers pay with debit cards. The interchange amendment, which did not receive a thorough review, does not belong in the bill and will have unintended consequences for community banks. The House also passed a financial reform bill (H.R. 4173) in December of 2009 that does not contain harmful interchange provisions, and the two chambers will soon reconcile the differing bills by a conference committee.

The interchange provision of the Senate bill offers no real "exemption" for community banks. If passed, merchants and big banks will set interchange rates that would make it impossible for community banks to compete. In the end, merchants could refuse to accept community bank debit cards.

Please take action now to ask your U.S. Representative to urge the members of the conference committee on H.R. 4173 to oppose the price-fixing and anti-consumer interchange language adopted by the Senate. To send a pre-written customizable letter via email, please CLICK HERE. Thank you!

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