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November 16, 2018

General Assembly Special Session

State Aid Package Coming for Hurricane Michael Assistance

GBA’s Government Relations team has been on site this week at the Capitol during the special session of the General Assembly called by the Governor to primarily focus on state aid in response to Hurricane Michael’s widespread damage. Of note for banks is that at press time there is $55 million proposed for direct loans to be administered through the Georgia Development Authority. Details of the program have not been finalized and are expected to be announced shortly. This allocation will be part of a larger disaster assistance program for producers GBA is supporting at the national level, also. Most of the money allocated during the state legislative session will be earmarked for local clean up and similar efforts. We’ll send out a Legislative Update at the session’s conclusion early next week. With questions, contact Elizabeth Chandler, 404.420.2027.


Chime in on CRA Modernization by Nov. 19 - Tool Available

We’ve heard from regulatory agencies that direct banker feedback will be critical for efforts to modernize the Community Reinvestment Act regulations. The deadline for comments to the OCC’s advanced notice of proposed rulemaking for a major update of the 30-year old legislation the act is Nov. 19, so even if you’re not regulated by OCC, please weigh in directly or let us know your thoughts so we can include them in a letter we’re going to submit. We have a resource available on request that can help you draft a comment letter. The outline suggests several important themes to consider, including ideas for adjusting the current CRA framework, how performance is measured, adjustments to assessment area definitions and more. Contact Elizabeth Chandler, 404.420.2027, for access to the helpful tool.

Crime Doesn’t Pay

If you follow our @gabankers Twitter feed, you saw this week that GBA president and CEO Joe Brannen was a state’s witness in a trial in Bartow, FL, of an alleged cybercriminal, Erika Mitton, who was charged with spoofing Joe’s email address resulting in a fraudulent wire being made to her account. Also subpoenaed to testify was GBA’s senior accountant Gino Lassiter and two bankers from Regions Bank where the alleged perpetrator had her account. The incident happened in mid-2016 just as spoofing began to take off as a new tool by the bad guys. Click here to read about the trial outcome and important lessons learned.

Resource Update

Hurricane Info, Georgia Banking Update Refreshed

We’ve published updates this week to two important member resources. On our Hurricane Information website, we’ve added fresh links to fact sheets for all USDA ag-relief programs and re-organized the content for easier scanning. Also, we’ve refreshed some of the content in our Georgia Banking Update. We’ll have another update ready after all third-quarter data is reported by FDIC and in advance of the new legislative year. With questions, contact David Oliver, 404.420.2036.

Fed Study

How our Mortgage Market Looks in terms of Share

Community banks in the Federal Reserve’s Sixth District, which includes Georgia, have a 22 percent share of the residential mortgage origination market. That’s declined by 5 percent since 2010, but not by as much as the 11 percent decline in the market for larger banks, which now stands at 9 percent. Independent mortgage companies hold the largest share at 43 percent. Fintech companies hold only 5 percent, but that’s on the rise. Community banks in rural markets still hold the highest market share, but nonbanks and fintechs are gaining there. Read the Fed’s analysis, which touches on the affects fintech firms are having.

Two Major Programs Coming Up - Credit Conference and Legislative Events

Don’t let the holidays distract you from signing up for and attending two of our key programs. Get more details and registration access here.
  • Credit Conference, Dec. 13-14
  • Legislative/Economic Forum and Legislative Reception, Jan. 16

Fed Supervisory Overview

‘Robust’ Financial Condition for Community Banks, Regulatory Priorities Named

A recent report by the Federal Reserve of its recent and upcoming supervisory priorities paints a good picture for the overall health of the industry. In particular, the report says, "Community banks are in robust financial condition," and that supervisory findings continue to decline. Those points of emphasis will be:

Small-Dollar Lending Ideas Sought

FDIC is looking for comments about how it can effectively encourage banks to offer small-dollar credit products. The intent is to balance customer needs and the need to underwrite and structure them responsibly. Details here…

Bulletin Break for Giving Thanks

Just a quick note that we don’t plan to publish a regular GBA E-Bulletin next Thursday evening as we join everyone in celebrating Thanksgiving. Of course, we'll dash out a quick E-Bulletin if there is breaking news that warrants immediate attention early in the week. And, we’ll send out a Legislative Update when the special session of the General Assembly adjourns. From the entire GBA staff, please accept our most heartfelt thanks for your continued support and confidence. We also send out the best wishes for a wonderful day of Thanksgiving to you, your families and friends in celebration of all of the blessings we enjoy.

BSA Seminar - Dec. 6, Macon

It can be extremely challenging for BSA officers to satisfy examiners and comply with BSA/AML/CIP/OFAC requirements. During this full-day seminar Dec. 6 at Middle Georgia State University in Macon, Steve Moore of Bank Compliance Services will help BSA officers with their wide range of duties and responsibilities, comply with BSA requirements and satisfy examiners. Read more about the seminar content here, and to register, register online here. Thanks to Doug Mims, Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC, for sponsoring this seminar.

IRS Announces Cost of Living Adjustments for 2019

The IRS recently announced the Cost of Living Adjustments for 2019, including retirement plan limit updates. The maximum annual participant deferral limit for a 401(k) plan has increased from $18,500 to $19,000. The catch-up contribution limit for participants over age 50 remains at $6,000. Please click here to see other retirement plan limits for 2019. We want to help you and your team members prepare for a financially stable retirement. GBA Retirement Services, Inc., an affiliate of GBA, is available to help you review your existing retirement plan. Click here for more information on the benefits of the 401(k) plans offered through GBA Retirement Services.

Save Big on Home Supplies with GBA Strategic Partner Office Depot

We often tell you about all the steep discounts and bargains your bank can take advantage of for business and office supply purchases through our partnership with Office Depot, but it sure would be nice to catch a break on the cost of things you need at home too. Remember that our Office Depot purchasing program is available for all GBA member employees for personal purchases as well. Click here for more information about obtaining your store purchasing card. Your bank does not have to be participating in the GBA program for you to save money shopping for your home and family. With questions contact Office Depot’s Lisa Perlet or GBA’s Bo Brannen, 404.420.2014.

With Discover® Debit, Your Bank Will Develop a More Profitable Debit Program

The Discover Debit program makes your brand stand out above the rest. The list of consumer and business card benefits available through Discover’s program are simply unmatched. Click here to see just a few of the valuable options your bank can choose from. Discover Debit is an offering of the PULSE Network, a Discover Company. With questions, contact Mark Reda, 813.854.2210.

Online Classes - December & January

Attention Marketing Professionals

ABA facilitated online courses feature an online learning community with fellow students, instructor guidance and feedback. Click here to see the five upcoming courses scheduled to begin in December and January, most of which focus on bank marketing. For more information, contact Shan Haugabrook, 404.420.2020.

High Performance Learning with ABA Certificates

Build the skills and knowledge needed for advancement with industry-recognized ABA certificates. These online programs bring unmatched content in an engaging, flexible, and mobile format that suits those who are on-the-move and on-the-job. See the list of certificate programs here. For more information about any ABA offerings, contact Shan Haugabrook, 404.420.2020.
Fill a Job, Find a Job with the GBA Job Bank
The GBA Job Bank is among the most popular and valuable benefits we provide to member banks and bankers. The Positions Available and Bankers Available sections on our website consistently are among the most visited pages. Best of all, the service costs nothing for member banks and bankers. If you have any questions, please contact GBA's Katina Prokos at 404.420.2021.
GBA Community Connections
We want to share all the good work GBA member banks, bankers, Associate Members and Bank Counsel Section members do to support their communities. Read all about the Community Connections our banks and members have below. Share your Community Connections by sending a brief paragraph and any photos of activities you have to us and we'll publish them at our earliest opportunity. Send information to Katina Prokos and David Oliver, or if your company would like to sponsor this content, let us know. Here's our latest installment...
Newton Federal Bank
Queensborough National Bank & Trust
South Georgia Banking Company
Oconee State Bank
PrimeSouth Bank
Thomas Hogan
Larry Walker
Dennis Zember
Mark Flowers
Southeastern Bank
Michelle Bowman
Read All About It: Send Us Your News
We want to share your news with your colleagues around the state. Please forward your announcements about promotions, new employees and special recognition your bank has received along with any available photos to GBA's David Oliver and Katina Prokos.