The Year Ahead in D.C.- New Faces in Congress, Regulatory Bodies

CRE Finance World, Winter 2013

The Year Ahead in DC — New Faces in Congress, Regulatory Bodies Michael Flood Vice President, Legislative & Regulatory Policy CRE Finance Council W extent to which the White House and Congress can related rulemaking provisions.criteria and CFPB oversight, the Volcker Rule and “Too Big toFail” rule for large financial institutions. For CREFC, we expectMr. Hensarling, no fan of Dodd-Frank, to maintain rigorousoversight over regulatory implementation of Dodd-Frank andith the status quo election now in the rearview mirror,the focus of the nation as of press time is on thefiscal cliff and debt ceiling impasse. What ultimatelyhappens in those negotiations will likely determine the work together in 2013. And, if they can reach a deal, then the main priority for 2013 will be implementing any agreed upon tax Given the majority rules structure of the House, Hensarling will not increases and budget cuts. have to work with Waters to achieve bipartisan consensus if he chooses not to. However, if his intention is to craft legislation that Regardless of the outcome, the commercial real estate industry could pass the Senate and be signed by President Obama, he will will yet again need to concentrate on Congress as it contemplates have to win to some degree the support of Representative Waters. Dodd-Frank oversight, multifamily finance reform and terrorism risk insurance. At the same time regulators — some of which will come In the Senate, we are excited to see Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) under new leadership — will finally implement a slew of Dodd-Frank ascend to the Ranking Member spot alongside returning Chairman regulations important to the future of our industry. Tim Johnson (D-SD). This is good news for CREFC, as Senator Crapo has been a strong supporter of our markets and constituents As such, CREFC is focused on the 80 new Members of Congress, throughout his tenure on the Banking Committee. the newly installed leaders of Congressional committees and the regulatory agencies likely to receive new leadership. Our primary Senator Crapo was the lead sponsor for the amendment that created objective going forward will be to assess the changes and meet the carve out for CMBS risk retention. We enjoy strong staff and with new lawmakers and staff. Our task will be to educate them member relationships with both offices and we look forward to on the benefits commercial real estate finance provides to their working with the committee as they pursue their agenda which is constituents and the economy at large, explain the policies we are likely to see a handful of Administration nominee confirmations, a seeking to advance or deter and develop productive relationships. renewed focus on community banks, oversight of the SEC and the implementation of Dodd/Frank, including Volcker and Basel rules. Congress Down Constitution Avenue to the Capitol, CREFC primarily has Another encouraging sign is the Chairman and Ranking Member’s two committees of jurisdiction to navigate — the Senate Banking willingness to engage in discreet fixes to Dodd/Frank known in Committee and the House Financial Services Committee. The the beltway as “technical corrections”. There could be an opening Financial Services Committee will have two new Members atop the for minor modifications to provisions affecting CRE finance such dais for both parties who are polar opposites politically. The ascension as risk-retention. of Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) and Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) portend big changes both in the way the committee Other CRE Finance Issues Congress Will Likely Consider conducts its business and at the staff level. Chairman Hensarling Terrorism Risk Insurance (TRIA) Reauthorization. This is the federal is a staunch advocate for limited government – a position popular program that was established in the wake of the 9/11 attacks that in his home district of Dallas. Conversely, Mrs. Waters, a member funds property and casualty claims in the event of a terrorist event. of the House Progressive Caucus, is an outspoken critic of the It is slated expire in 2014. Some Republicans have taken exception financial services industry. with a government involvement in this program. Democrats need to be convinced this is not a subsidy to the insurance industry, and we The outspoken Mr. Hensarling is a huge proponent of GSE reform expect a somewhat contentious debate as to the government’s role and often attacks Dodd/Frank from behind the dais. We expect going forward. the committee agenda to include GSE Reform, qualified mortgage CRE Finance World Winter 2013 6


CRE Finance World, Winter 2013
To see the actual publication please follow the link above