Washington, D.C. – Today, the Financial Stability Oversight Council Reform Act, authored by Congressman Tom Emmer (MN-06), passed out of the House Financial Services Committee. Congressman Emmer has served on the committee for less than six months after filling a vacancy earlier this year.
“Today was a win for American consumers,” Emmer said. “Now that we have moved this legislation through the Financial Services Committee, we are one step closer to returning the power of the purse back to Congress where it belongs.”
“If made law, the Financial Stability Oversight Council and the Office of Financial Research will no longer be able to determine their own budgets, instead the American people will have a say through their elected representatives and the congressional appropriations process,” said Emmer. “I believe in government transparency and the constitutional role of checks and balances, and this bill helps restore these critical principles.”
The Financial Services Oversight Council (FSOC), which was created in 2010 under Dodd-Frank, has the power to designate financial institutions as “systemically important” resulting in greater regulatory burdens. Thus far, this process has lacked transparency and has failed to provide a path forward for these institutions to reform their business model in order to prevent the next economic crisis. The Office of Financial Research (OFR) conducts research on the behalf of FSOC and has unchecked authority to demand information from businesses about their affairs.
Congressman Emmer’s legislation not only subjects FSOC and OFR to the congressional appropriation process, but it also enhances transparency by requiring quarterly reports from OFR about their spending and activities. Lastly, under this bill, OFR has to provide a public notice and comment period of at least 90 days before issuing certain reports, rules, or regulations. This increased oversight and transparency ensures safe and competitive financial markets, enabling Americans’ access to a diverse selection of financial products that fit their specific needs.
The Financial Stability Oversight Council Reform Act is H.R. 3340. Click here to read the full text.
Congressman Tom Emmer represents Minnesota’s Sixth Congressional District and is a member of the House Financial Services Committee.