Rep. Marge Roukema, chairwoman of the House Banking Committee's financial institutions subcommittee, has scheduled hearings starting Thursday on money laundering, regulatory relief, and community reinvestment requirements.

The New Jersey Republican's panel, together with the subcommittee on oversight, is to hold a hearing April 15 on bulk cash smuggling and the use of traveler's checks, money orders, or other financial instruments to launder illegal funds.

Officials from the Treasury and Justice departments, state bank regulators, and representatives of the check cashing industry are among the invited witnesses.

A second hearing is set for April 20 on the Bank Secrecy Act and the abortive know-your-customer regulatory proposal; the third, which is expected in May or June, is to focus on offshore banking.

Meanwhile, Rep. Roukema has scheduled a May 12 hearing on regulatory relief legislation, which among other things would permit banks to pay interest on business checking accounts and earn interest on required reserves at the Federal Reserve.

The subcommittee also plans to delve into the controversial Community Reinvestment Act by midsummer.

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