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IBAA ANNOUNCES NEW PROGRAM TO HELP MEMBERS MANAGE REGULATORY COMPLIANCE BURDEN

 IBAA ANNOUNCES NEW PROGRAM TO HELP MEMBERS
 MANAGE REGULATORY COMPLIANCE BURDEN
 WASHINGTON, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The Independent Bankers Association of America (IBAA) announced today a "Regulatory Assistance and Legal Services Program" for member banks.
 The innovative program is another part of IBAA's overall response to the massive new regulatory burden. It will provide banks with one-on-one assistance in dealing with complex new regulations and stricter examination and enforcement practices. This program supplements the IBAA's ongoing efforts to affect overall regulatory policy and support legislation to ease the regulatory burden.
 The IBAA selected the law firm of Bracewell & Patterson to provide this new service. The firm will provide compliance advice regarding federal banking laws, rules and regulations to IBAA members that join the program.
 "Banks are battling the most complex regulatory environment in U.S. history," said IBAA President Robert Hawkins, chairman of the Southern Commercial Bank in St. Louis.
 "IBAA members must arm themselves with knowledge and expert advice and assistance to put them on a more level playing field with the regulators, and this new IBAA program brings them closer to this goal."
 Hawkins cites the requirements of the FDIC Improvement Act of 1991 as the most recent example of the "tremendously complex regulatory burden now placed on banks. The program was created in response to repeated requests by IBAA members for expert assistance in understanding and complying with the many new, complex regulatory requirements now in place, and the many more to come out of FDICIA," Hawkins said.
 "Because most community banks don't have in-house counsel and don't always have easy access to law firms with in-depth regulatory experience, we are making it easier for our members to receive expert specialized information and legal services," he said.
 Hawkins stated that membership in the program will be available to all IBAA member banks as of Dec. 19.
 The regulatory assistance program offers IBAA member banks two levels of participation. One level offers periodic written legal advisories prepared by Bracewell & Patterson financial services lawyers and consultants which will explain various regulatory requirements and give specific compliance advice.
 Participating members and their attorneys also will be entitled to four telephone consultations annually with Bracewell & Patterson lawyers and consultants on federal regulatory issues of specific interest to the bank, including the application of federal banking laws, rules and regulations to bank transactions, and explanations of federal agency enforcement practices and procedures. A second level of participation offers only the written legal advisories.
 The IBAA program will be administered by Leonard J. Rubin, a senior partner of Bracewell & Patterson in its Washington financial services practice. Rubin also serves as general counsel to IBAA. James L. Sexton, formerly director of bank supervision for the FDIC and former banking commissioner of Texas, manages the firm's financial institution consulting group and will provide additional support for the program.
 Robert L. Clarke, former U.S. Comptroller of the Currency, is the head of Bracewell & Patterson's Financial Services Group.
 The IBAA is the only national association that exclusively represents the interests of the nation's community banks.
 -0- 11/12/92
 /CONTACT: Kenneth Guenther or Diane Casey of IBAA, 202-659-8111, or Paul White of Read-Poland Assoc., 713-622-5040/ CO: Independent Bankers Association of America ST: District of Columbia IN: FIN SU:


KD -- DC016 -- 0185 11/12/92 12:39 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 12, 1992
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