Senate Says Consumers Ignored InRegulatory Relief Process

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WASHINGTON - (06/22/05) -- Key members of the Senate BankingCommittee made it clear Tuesday that efforts to pass a regulatoryrelief bill won't go very far until regulators get more input fromconsumers on the process. Sen. Paul Sarbanes, D-Md., the rankingDemocrat on the panel, told banking regulators he was dismayed therecommendations endorsed by the federal agencies were drafted inconcert with industry representatives with little input fromconsumers. "Well, I have to tell you, I think there's a problemhere," said Sarbanes. "Clearly, these consumer groups have a roleto play." Sen. Michael Crapo, R-Idaho, who is drafting theregulatory relief bill in the Senate, agreed, telling theregulators they need to listen to the consumer groups when makingtheir recommendations. The senators remarks came before consumergroups urged them to reject the banks' requests to roll-backconsumer protections on the three-day rescission period formortgages, truth in lending disclosures and other measures, in thename of regulatory relief. Attendance by committee members wassparse, with Sen. Richard Shelby, chairman of the committee, absentbecause of other Senate business.

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