Community bankers sure are getting a lot of love in Washington lately. Just days after the FDIC's board of directors voted in late May to establish an advisory committee on community banking, legislation was introduced in the House that would create an assistant secretary for community financial institutions within the Treasury Department. The bill's passage is by no means guaranteed, but with a major battle on regulatory reform looming, community bankers relish the idea of having one of their own inside the Obama administration.

Rep. Dennis Cardozo, a California Democrat, is the bill's sponsor. He said that Congress must give small banks "special consideration for their unique role when devising national policies."

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