Saturday, July 20, 2024

Executive News: Candidate filing period is interesting time in politics

It’s almost 5 p.m. on Friday, April 4, and I’m anxiously sitting at my computer constantly hitting the refresh button.

Now I know what its like trying to get Taylor Swift tickets.

Adrian Beverage, OBA President and CEO

Every refresh, you look for any changes and, frankly at this point, if there were changes I probably wouldn’t even notice.

No, I’m not looking for concert tickets or trying to book tickets to the 2025 college football national championship game to watch Nebraska reclaim glory – I’m waiting for the 5 p.m. closing of the candidate filing period for state and federal offices. Every election year candidate filing is in early April, it aways starts on a Wednesday and concludes the following Friday. It makes for great viewing to be there when filing opens at 8 a.m. on that Wednesday as it is usually the busiest time.

You’ll see current elected officials yucking it up with other members while there are others who are so nervous they have to hold onto the temporary rope maze that guides you toward the front of the line.

I like to scan the crowd to see all the new faces who are taking a leap and putting their name on the ballot – do they really know what they are getting into?
Who knows, the timid filer who is shaking as they meet with Secretary of the State Election Board Paul Ziriax to make it official, might just be speaker of the House one day.
Let’s take a deep dive into what happened or didn’t happen during the filing period.

On the federal side, all five congressional seats are up, although neither of our two U.S. Senate seats are up in 2024. Below are your candidates for Oklahoma’s congressional seats in 2024;

Congressional District 1
Republican
Kevin Hern (incumbent)
Paul Royse

Democratic
Evelyn Rogers
Dennis Baker

Independent
Mark David Garcia Sanders

Congressional District 2
Republican
Josh Brecheen (incumbent)

Democratic
Brandon Wade

Independent
Ronnie Hopkins

Congressional District 3
Republican
Frank Lucas (incumbent)
Darren Hamilton
Robin Lynn Carter

Congressional District 4
Republican
Tom Cole (incumbent)
Andrew Hayes
Paul Bondar
Nick Hankins
Rick Whitebear Harris

Democratic
Mary Brannon
Kody Macaulay

Independent
James Stacy

Congressional District 5
Republican
Stephanie Bice (incumbent)

Democratic
Madison Horn

Candidate filing for the state Senate and state House is always exciting as there are a couple members who don’t make a decision to file or not file up until the close of the filing period.

Going into filing, we knew there would be some new faces in the House with four Republican members term-limited and six others who had announced they weren’t running again or instead were making the run for a state Senate seat.

On the state Senate side, there are five members term-limited and three who announced they weren’t going to seek re-election in 2024.

Now that filing is over, members are going to go into campaign mode. The primary elections are on June 18, so for incumbent legislators, it doesn’t leave a lot of time after the end of session in May. Candidates will be spending every weekend back in their district talking to constituents and attending every event possible.

While candidate filing is happening and all the action that goes along with it, we are still in session and are up against a deadline. We have several bills we need to have heard, and several bills we are hoping won’t be heard. I will have a full review of what survived the deadline next month and where we stand going into the home stretch of this year’s legislative session.

• • •

On the federal side of issues, we are still battling the same rules, regs and legislation. Below are a few of the legislative and regulatory proposals still active and being attempted to move.

CFPB proposed rule on overdrafts

On Jan. 17, the CFPB released a notice of proposed rulemaking to amend Reg. E and Z to update regulations for overdraft credit provided by very large financial institutions.

The proposed rule would apply to bank with at least $10 billion in assets.

The proposed rule would go into effect in October 2025, after the presidential election. A new presidential administration might overturn the rule due to the effective date.

The proposed rule would provide three options for covered financial institutions:

Treat overdrafts as an extension of credit, which would require Regulation Z disclosures with each overdraft.

Charge a “break-even” amount that allows banks to on recoup the cost of providing the overdraft.

Charge the safe harbor amount that the CFPB establishes. The CFPB is considering setting the benchmark fee at $3, $6, $7 or $14, and has requested comments on which calculation is best.
The proposed rule would also prohibit covered banks from automatically repaying overdrafts from a consumers account. Instead, the consumer would the choice of how to repay the overdraft and the fee.

The CFPB’s proposal to cap overdraft fees would have a significant negative impact. The estimated cost to the very large banks would be $3.5-5.6 billion. The rule is based on the assumption consumers will benefit from increased protections at very large banks, covering around 80% of consumer deposits and 68% of overdraft charges as of Dec. 22. Banks with assets less than $10 billion are exempt from the rule and are their regulatory requirements remain the same. The deadline for comments is April 1, 2024.

Trigger leads
Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.) recently introduced the Homebuyers’ Protection Privacy Act (S.B.3502). The Act would amend the Fair Credit Reporting Act to prohibit credit-reporting agencies from selling trigger leads in certain circumstances. Trigger leads are a marketing product sold by credit bureaus containing contact information for consumers who have had a credit report pulled while in the process of shopping for a mortgage loan.

In the bill, a consumer-reporting agency would not be able to furnish a trigger lead to a third party unless: the third party certifies to the consumer reporting agency the consumer has authorized the solicitations; or the third party certifies it has originated the consumer’s current residential mortgage loan, is the servicer of the consumer’s current residential mortgage loan or is an insured depository institution or insured credit union and holds a deposit account for the consumer to whom the consumer report relates.

Similar legislation has been introduced in the House.

• • •

Since we last talked, there has been significant movement on the CRA final rules.

Federal bank regulatory agencies recently issued an interim final rule that extends the applicability date of certain provisions in their CRA final rule that was issued in October 2023. The agencies extended the applicability date of the facility-based assessment areas and public file provisions from April 1, 2024, to Jan. 1, 2026.

Banks will not have to make changes to their assessment areas or their public files as a result of the 2023 CRA final rule until Jan. 1, 2026.

While the interim final rule was well received by the industry, even better news was about to be delivered. In late March a federal judge deliver a significant win for the industry by issuing a preliminary injunction challenging the CRA final rules. The injunction will pause the implementation of the rules until the court decides on the merits of the case that has been filed.

• • •

Things are moving fast and furious both in Oklahoma City and Washington, D.C., and the dust will settle on a lot of our issues in the coming weeks.

We are likely going to need your help – when we reach out to you to contact either your state or federal officials, it’s vital you engage. The OBA can make the necessary arguments, but hearing from their bankers, and how certain issues will impact the bank or the bank’s customers, is the most powerful message that can be delivered.