House Committee Acts on Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Legislation

May 17, 2011 - The House Financial Services Committee approved three bills recently involving the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a new federal agency created by the Dodd-Frank Act.

In the mark-up, the Committee approved H.R. 1121 which would change the leadership of the CFPB to a five-member, bipartisan commission in place of the Director. A majority of other financial regulatory agencies are governed by multi-person commissions or boards.

The CFPB currently does not have a Senate-confirmed Director; however, the President appointed Elizabeth Warren as a special adviser to manage the start up of the agency. H.R. 1667, also approved by the Committee, would allow the CFPB to continue to operate under the U.S. Treasury Secretary’s authority if there is not a Senate-confirmed director by July 21.

Additionally, H.R. 1315 was approved by the Committee that makes a change to the process by which CFPB regulations can be overruled. The bill would change the vote required to set aside regulations from two-thirds of the Financial Stability Oversight Council’s (FSOC) voting members to a simple majority and would give the FSOC sufficient time to consider the safety and soundness implications of rules. It also clarifies that the FSOC must set aside any CFPB regulation that is inconsistent with the safe and sound operations of U.S. financial institutions.

The bills will now go to the full House for consideration. To view the bills, visit http://thomas.loc.gov.