Nebraska banks could gain the same powers as national banks under a bill that passed the state Legislature this month.
Gov. Mike Johannes is expected to sign the so-called "wild-card" measure. It would authorize the banking commissioner to change the state banking charter to match national bank powers without obtaining further legislative approval.
Such regulatory authority has become popular among states working to keep their charters competitive. In fact, only Connecticut, Iowa, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina have not adopted a wild-card law.
George Beattie, executive vice president of the Nebraska Bankers Association, said state banks and thrifts would not immediately gain new powers. But the legislation is needed in case Congress adopts financial reform this summer after the state Legislature recesses, he said.