Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee urged a congressional deficit-reduction panel to consider overhauling the Dodd-Frank Act as a way to spur U.S. economic growth and boost federal revenue.
“Some 15 months after Dodd-Frank was enacted, many small businesses are starved for customers and credit; unemployment has soared to more than 9 percent; and for far too many American families, economic security seems further away than ever,” Representative Spencer Bachus, the Alabama Republican who leads the Financial Services panel, wrote in a letter to Representative Jeb Hensarling and Senator Patty Murray, the co- chairmen of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction.
Bachus’ letter, signed by 21 Republicans on his committee, included 11 pages of recommendations that track closely with measures the panel has weighed since taking majority control in January. He proposed trimming or ending housing programs run by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, raising guarantee fees charged by mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and rolling back Securities and Exchange Commission limits on the number of shareholders companies can have while remaining closely held.
Creating an environment for economic growth is “as important a priority as cutting government expenditures,” Bachus wrote on the letter. Dodd-Frank, the regulatory overhaul enacted last year, is “the most significant impediment to economic growth” within the panel’s jurisdiction, he wrote.
Attached to the letter is an inventory of 24 House bills to reshape or repeal portions of the law, which was passed by a Democratic-led Congress with little Republican support. The proposals range from changing the structure and funding of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and expanding exemptions from new derivatives regulations to a full repeal of the law.
Lawmakers are filing final recommendations to the 12-member supercommittee led by Hensarling, a Texas Republican, and Murray, a Washington Democrat. The group, created by Congress as part of the August deal to prevent a U.S. default, is tasked with finding $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction by Nov. 23. Congress would then have a month to hold an up-or-down vote on the proposal. If Congress doesn’t act, automatic spending cuts begin in fiscal 2013.
--Editor: Gregory Mott
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