Action Alerts

Make a difference in our industry by participating in IBA Action Alerts on issues impacting you, your bank, and your community.

Call to Action: Credit Card Routing Mandate

December 2022 Update: The IBA joined partner organizations from throughout the country urging congressional leaders to oppose passing “Durbin 2.0” during the end-of-year “lame duck” session of congress. The IBA-opposed legislation would expand the Durbin Amendment’s rate caps to credit cards and would impose routing mandates on credit card transactions. Read the letter.

Write your lawmakers today! Urge them to oppose S. 4674, the Credit Card Competition Act.

Federal: Credit Card Routing Mandate

December 2022

The IBA joined partner organizations from throughout the country urging congressional leaders to oppose passing “Durbin 2.0” during the end-of-year “lame duck” session of congress. The IBA-opposed legislation would expand the Durbin Amendment’s rate caps to credit cards and would impose routing mandates on credit card transactions. Read the letter.

August 2022

Senators Roger Marshall (R-KS) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) have recently introduced S. 4674, legislation expanding government routing mandates to the credit card market. 

Over ten years ago, the Durbin amendment imposed a price cap on interchange rates that financial institutions can receive on debit cards and mandated financial institutions offer at least two networks for routing debit card transactions. Rather than save consumers money as promised, merchants pocketed the savings they reaped from the government price cap. At the same time, community banks lost a revenue source to support important consumer benefits like free checking and debit rewards.

This new legislation would impose even more restrictions on credit card transactions. Rather than allowing banks to choose networks offering the best customer experience, security, and resiliency, they would be forced to choose among options set by the Federal Reserve. This means banks would be forced to do business with companies that may be less safe for consumers and unreliable.

This bill also would require banks to accept all transactions a merchant requests, forcing banks to reissue cards to meet new retailer demands. Community banks, which tend to have a lower volume of credit card transactions, may be forced to no longer offer credit cards. This government intervention would alter their options and negotiating power in private business decisions.

Write your lawmakers today! Urge them to oppose S. 4674, the Credit Card Competition Act. Also please consider sharing this request with your colleagues, so that we can speak up in significant numbers against the bill.

Federal: Federal Home Loan Bank System

October 2022

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has extended the comment period until October 31 to provide input on FHLBank System at 100: Focusing on the Future, a review of the FHLBanks’ structure and mission. 

The IBA recently submitted our own letter. It describes how the FHLBank Chicago promotes stability in banking and empowers Illinois banks and thrifts to expand services in their communities. The letter emphasizes the crucial role that the FHLBanks play in affordable housing, including working with local banks to develop affordable rental units throughout Illinois. 

We urge the FHFA to refrain from adding additional non-depositories to the FHLB membership. “Shifting the System away from [its] well-tested structure — and worse, towards the priorities of untested, unregulated, or illiquid players in the financial market — jeopardizes the FHLBank System’s stability and its ability to serve local communities,” the letter says. 

Finally, we stress the importance of the System’s regional structure and local leadership. “Continued local control of the regional banks ensures that they are responsive to community needs in our rapidly-shifting financial marketplace,” the letter states. 

Share your bank’s story by October 31! The FHLBank of Chicago has created a toolkit for bankers to assist with the process. Please use thetoolkit and then submit your comments to share your bank’s story about how the FHLBank System benefits your communities! 

Please share a copy of your submitted letter with us and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago. 

If you have questions, please contact the IBA's Government Relations team.

Federal: Credit Union Expansion

June 2022

Ask Your Member of Congress to “REMOVE” all elements of the credit union charter enhancement bill (H.R. 7003) from a pending legislative package! Next week, the U.S. House plans to vote on an IBA-opposed credit union charter enhancement bill, H.R. 7003, as part of a larger legislative package, H.R. 2543 - Financial Services Racial Equity, Inclusion, and Economic Justice Act.

H.R. 7003, if included in the larger bill, creates a new loophole for tax-exempt credit unions and expands their field of membership and business-leading capacities. Credit unions are engaged in a grassroots campaign on this bill – we need bankers to match their efforts if we hope to stop the bill. Please contact your U.S. House member today HERE! Also, please consider sharing this request with your colleagues, so that we can speak up in significant numbers against the bill.

State: Retailers’ Plan to Shift their Fraud Losses to Banks

April 2022

We are providing you with an update on the issues related to our grassroots action alert last week. We are pleased to report that the financial industry has successfully stopped an attempt by the Illinois retail industry to shift store fraud loss liability to card issuers, including banks.

Amendments to HB 1091 filed last night and this morning remove IBA-opposed language that would have allowed merchants to recover card-related fraudulent purchase losses directly from card issuers. The amendments also remove IBA-opposed language that would have restrained card issuers from following their dispute resolution responsibilities under federal regulations.

The amendments instead add language requiring card issuers to consider “a merchant’s timely submission of compelling evidence under the applicable dispute management guidelines of the card association with whom the merchant maintains an agreement.” This language goes on to require merchants to acknowledge their own obligations under similar network agreements. We also reached an agreement on parts of the legislation related to stored value card fraud.

Legislative successes like this are not possible without grassroots involvement by front-line bankers across Illinois. We sincerely thank all bankers who quickly took action by contacting their state senators. As the IBA lobbied against the bill over the last five days, it was clear that bankers’ outreach made a difference. Your calls and emails had a tremendous impact in supplementing our advocacy team’s efforts on-the-ground efforts at the state capitol.

If you have questions or comments, please contact the IBA's Government Relations team.

March 2022

Please contact your Senator today! Ask Them to VOTE “NO!” on the Retailers’ Plan to Shift their Fraud Losses to Banks!

The retail crime bill pending in the State Senate includes language that will inappropriately shift liability to banks, thrifts, and other card issuers for fraudulent merchant transactions. Senate Amendment #1 to House Bill 1091 primarily addresses organized retail crimes. The retail industry added the last-minute language that would make banks responsible for fraud losses when they restore a customer’s account after a fraudulent purchase is made or when a bank identifies fraud and freezes a transaction. In these situations, the legislation would require banks to restore the customer’s funds and reimburse the merchant for their losses. In addition, the bill places confusing and unworkable limits on prepaid and other stored value cards. The bill could be heard in the Senate Executive Committee as early as today, and if it passes the committee, it could be considered on the Senate floor very quickly. We ask all bankers to contact their State Senators immediately on this issue.

Take action in three easy steps:

  1. Look up your state senator by address here. Then view our Senate contact list to find your Senator’s phone number and email address. If you have your Senator’s direct mobile number, call or text them as well.
  2. Use our talking points below or our sample email HERE to express your strong opposition to your Senator.
  3. Finally, contact the IBA Government Relations team to let us know who you contacted, and please share any feedback you received from your Senator or their staff.

TALKING POINTS: Remove Fraud-Liability Shift Language in HB 1091 (Sen. Glowiak Hilton)

  1. This bill contains provisions inappropriately shifting big-box retailers’ fraud costs onto consumers’ financial institutions.
  2. This could amount to a double loss for the financial institution: they already pay to restore their consumer’s loss from fraudulent purchases that occur at a retail location. Then, under this bill, financial institutions would ALSO be required to directly pay merchants for fraudulent purchases that occurred on the retailer’s watch.
  3. Unlike the retailer, a financial institution or card issuer is not present for the acts of fraud contemplated in this legislation. And retailers do not protect their consumers in the same ways that banks do. Financial institutions spend billions per year and have thousands of dedicated employees across the country specifically to protect American consumers’ accounts.
  4. It is troubling that big-box retailers, who have opposed adopting bank-level consumer protections, are attempting to shift their own losses to financial institutions – in instances where the financial institution is simply stopping fraud and restoring their customers’ accounts.
  5. The bill also adds confusing consumer restrictions related to stored value cards like prepaid cards. These additions will harm legitimate customers purchasing gift cards by limiting their purchasing options.
  6. The banking related provisions of HB 1091 will harm consumers. They pad big-box retailers’ profits, creating even fewer incentives for retailers to protect their customers from fraud. The bill will create new, unnecessary scrutiny on customers experiencing legitimate fraudulent account activity.
  7. The card-related provisions of this bill have nothing to do with the bill’s underlying objectives. The Senate should COMPLETELY REMOVE the card-related provisions from this legislation.