Washington, D.C. (May 24, 2024) — Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey issued the following statement on House Agriculture Committee passage of the farm bill, H.R. 8467, on a 33-21 bipartisan vote.

“ICBA congratulates the House Agriculture Committee for taking the first step in passing a new farm bill and encourages members of Congress to reconcile remaining differences as the Farm, Food and National Security Act of 2024 moves to the House floor.

“The farm bill has numerous positive enhancements for American farm policy, though there are also provisions in the bill that cause concerns for the community banking industry.

“A few of the bill’s positive aspects include enhancements to commodity price supports, strengthening of the crop insurance program, and bolstering of USDA guaranteed loan programs with ICBA-advocated provisions. These improvements for guaranteed farm loan programs include an increase in loan limits and quicker loan approvals, among other policies that will help producers repay loans, protect assets, and afford expanded credit to sustain farm and ranch operations.

“ICBA continues to raise concerns with farm bill provisions that would expand the tax-advantaged Farm Credit System’s powers. There needs to be further scrutiny to prevent FCS lenders from broadly shifting into non-farm business lending. FCS also has a reduced regulatory compliance burden under the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s 1071 small business data collection and reporting rule that is not afforded to community banks. ICBA appreciates acknowledgement of this unfair burden by several members during the markup. We look forward to working with Congress to address our concerns in the weeks and months ahead.”

About ICBA

The Independent Community Bankers of America® has one mission: to create and promote an environment where community banks flourish. We power the potential of the nation’s community banks through effective advocacy, education, and innovation.

As local and trusted sources of credit, America’s community banks leverage their relationship-based business model and innovative offerings to channel deposits into the neighborhoods they serve, creating jobs, fostering economic prosperity, and fueling their customers’ financial goals and dreams. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at icba.org.