On the passage of the Conference Report on the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

June 30, 2010

Congressman Mike Capuano Issued the Following Statement After Passage of Wall Street Reform:

"With passage of the Conference Report on the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the House took a significant step forward in reining in Wall Street and protecting consumers. The worst economic crisis since the Great Depression required a substantial and sweeping response and this legislation goes far in addressing the problems that contributed to the financial crisis. It will create an independent authority to help consumers get clear information about mortgages and credit cards, and help them avoid hidden fees and other deceptive practices. It removes loopholes that permitted many risky practices to continue unnoticed and without regulation. It imposes transparency and oversight requirements for credit rating agencies. It takes on "too big to fail" financial entities by requiring tougher capital and leverage requirements, and establishes an independent mechanism to monitor systemic risk."

"It took many months to get here. The House, which passed its bill last year, waited patiently while the Senate searched for a way forward. It seems that the path to the President's desk is finally cleared, but not after making what I believe is a disappointing change to the conference report. Instead of imposing a levy on big hedge funds, the largest financial firms and banks to fund these new regulations, unspent TARP money will be tapped to cover these costs. This money could have gone to pay down the deficit or create jobs, but we are letting hedge funds and other previously unregulated financial entities who engaged in the most risky investments off the hook. To pay for the remaining costs of these regulations, the FDIC will also increase their fees on already-regulated banks. These institutions should be financially responsible for their actions, but hedge funds and other large financial companies should also pay their share - not taxpayers. Despite this change, which was made to satisfy a handful of Republican Senators, I voted for this bill because of its many positive components."

Contact: Alison M. Mills 617-621-6208