Nov. 1, 2019

2019 AgFarm Tour
Members Get Close-up Insight into Key Agribusinesses

A soggy couple of days couldn’t dampen the interest our members showed in three Georgia agribusiness operations during the 2019 GBA AgFarm tour. Members of the GBA Agriculture Committee and their guests were introduced to a craft seed-oil producer based in Pitts, one of the state’s leading cotton gin operations in Bronwood and a major dairy producer in Americus. "Getting to visit these types of businesses and see their operations up close is a huge value to my peers and me who specialize in banking Georgia’s ag industry," said Agriculture Committee Chair Danny Minick, The Citizens Bank of Americus. "I’m glad GBA provides the structure and organization to make tours like this possible because those of us who take part in this and other GBA programs learn something new each time we’re together and we also strengthen our peer network." Read the full details of the tour here.

Final Rule Issued to Simplify Capital Calculation for Community Banks

Regulators this week finalized the Community Bank Leverage Ratio (CBLR) Rule that will allow qualified banks to adopt a simpler method for measuring capital adequacy. To qualify for the framework, a community bank must have less than $10 billion in total consolidated assets, limited amounts of off-balance-sheet exposures and trading assets and liabilities, and a leverage ratio greater than 9 percent. All but a very few banks based in Georgia qualify for the simplified ratio. Get more details here.

More Timber Tax Credits Available for Hurricane Michael Losses

We were encouraged to see the news this week that the Department of Revenue is accepting a second round of timber tax credit applications for citizens who incurred timber losses from Hurricane Michael. The Department of Revenue puts the available timber tax credit for the second round of applications at about $134.4 million. The DOR said that as of Oct. 1, applications had been filed for less than $3 million of the available credits. Applications may be made through Dec. 31, 2019. Applicants that receive a preapproval will be notified of the amount they were preapproved during January 2020, says a news release announcing the credits by State Rep. Gerald Greene (R-Cuthbert). To apply for the timber tax credit, click here.

State CD Auction a Success

The Office of the State Treasurer (OST) has completed an auction among banks participating in the Secure Deposit Program (SDP) testing the interest to purchase CDs with maturities ranging from 6, 12, 18 and 24 months. Of the $40 million available, qualified banks successfully bid on $29.7 million across all maturities. The CD investments are being made from the Georgia Extended Asset Pool Plus (GEAP+) program. OST is reviewing the auction results and if demand warrants, future auctions of similar amounts and maturities could be held quarterly. GEAP+ currently holds investments with a market value of $163,974,383 as of Sept. 30, 2019.

How to Prepare for LIBOR Transition

Banks and other financial services firms should be planning now for the expected phase-out of Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) at the end of 2021. We’re committed to helping members navigate this change. Our friends at the FHLBank Atlanta have some good preliminary resources they agreed to share with our members here.

Hemp Production Rule Issued by USDA

The United States Department of Agriculture this week issued an interim final rule detailing its standardized framework for how it will approve state regulatory plans for overseeing hemp production. The 2018 Farm Bill reclassified hemp as a legal agricultural commodity, and the rule sets the requirements for how to maintain information on the land where hemp is produced, test THC levels and dispose of plants that do not meet the necessary standards. They also address licensing requirements and compliance. Legal hemp growing and production of hemp-based products in Georgia will be subject to regulations still in development by the state, and USDA must approve those rules. Here are details about that process.

Meet New GBA Team Member ShaKeya Snipes

Please join us in welcoming ShaKeya Snipes to the GBA family. She started work this week with our Member Solutions team as Professional Development Coordinator responsible for webinars, registrations, program calendars, member record management, MyGBA profile online access, administrative support for ABA courses, CLE-credit certifications for appropriate events and more. Read more about ShaKeya and see her staff member profile here.

Women in Banking Conference Is Just Two Weeks Away - There’s Still Time to Register

GBA’s 2019 Women in Banking Conference is just a little over two weeks away and there is still time to reserve your seat. This year’s event is Nov. 17-19 at Legacy Lodge at Lake Lanier in Buford. Female bankers and associate members who work in or serve all areas of banking will benefit from this highly anticipated event. There is something on the agenda for every banker - click here to see the lineup of top-tier speakers and access hotel info and online registration. A few rooms are still available at the Legacy Lodge, but be sure to register by Nov. 4 to take advantage of the early registration price of $395.

Headline Speakers Announced for January Legislative and Economic Forum

We’ve confirmed three big-name speakers for GBA’s 2020 Legislative and Economic Forum & Reception Jan. 15 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta (downtown). This annual event draws about 200 bankers from around our state, and with an election year nipping at our heels, the need to stay abreast of the political and legislative scene is more important than ever. We will welcome back John Ashford, renowned political consultant and chairman and CEO of The Hawthorn Group, LC, an international public affairs and public relations firm he co-founded in 1992. Ashford will give us his take on all things political and his predictions on how the election year will shape up. Jeffrey Dorfman, professor of agricultural and applied economics at the University of Georgia and Gov. Brian Kemp's state fiscal economist, will share his economic forecast for Georgia as well as a national and global outlook. And, Kevin Hagler, Commissioner of Georgia’s Department of Banking and Finance, will give us an overview of the department’s annual housekeeping bill and the supervisory priorities for the department in 2020. We're working on some additional guests for the Forum program, so stay tuned. Get more information on the event here.

Two Heavy-hitting Professional Skills Conferences Coming Up

  • We’re almost ready for the 2019 Financial Risk Management Conference Nov. 7-8 at the Hyatt Regency Perimeter at Villa Christina. There’s still time to register for this annual conference designed to give your bank’s finance teams a strong start to 2020. Featured topics include contract negotiation tactics, tax credits, an economic update, a CECL update and tech trends.
  • Momentum is building for the 2019 Credit Conference Dec. 5-6 at the Renaissance Waverly Hotel in Atlanta. This year, the GBA Credit Committee has challenged attendees to bring an up-and-comer from their banks to take part in leadership training and benefit from the great agenda. See the all-star speaker lineup and register here. Featured topics include housing and CRE updates, an ag economy update from Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, credit quality trends and an economic update from Roger Tutterow.

Medicare Webinars Available for GBAIT Participants

There is a series of webinar dates coming up to help GBA Insurance Trust members learn about Medicare and how to effectively coordinate enrollment into the program, whether retired or still working. This webinar is available for all covered members of the GBAIT, spouses, and immediate family members. We have made participation as easy as possible with online registration and seven dates throughout November and December to ensure there is plenty of opportunity form members to take advantage of this new benefit. Click here for content info and online registration.

GBA Strategic Partner
At $32 per Month, Digital Signage at Your Branches Has Never Been as Affordable and Easy

Banks of all sizes have been hearing more lately about the benefits of using digital signage to grow loan, deposits and profits. High-quality graphics and videos delivered on-screen, in your branches, will regularly grab your customers’ attention without the recurring costs of printing and mailing marketing material. The digital signage solution from GBA Strategic Partner (BMC) allows you to customize your digital content and run it in all, or some, of your branches, in no time. BMC offers digital signage, starting at just $32 per month, plus the cost of hardware. You can subscribe to their digital signage as a standalone solution, or along with their full marketing portal that includes hundreds of templates for ads, brochures, direct mail, posters and more. Click here to learn about additional BMC Digital Signage benefits and how to set up a demo.

2019 BankPAC Campaign Update

The GBA FedPAC and StatePAC continue to see success in this year’s campaign and we hope that those who have not yet participated will do so soon. See how your GBA Group is progressing toward its goals. With online capability of contributing to the GBA FedPAC, all eligible employees, officers and directors, can simply use this link to make a contribution by logging in with your MyGBA username and password. Also, here are the contribution forms for both the FedPAC and the StatePAC which include a useful guide of suggested amounts of giving. With questions, please call Elizabeth Chandler at 404.420.2027.

Time for an Insurance Program Review?
GBA Strategic Partner ABA Insurance Services is the Most Reliable Source of Insurance for Banks

If your bank is undergoing or considering a review of its business insurance programs, please keep in mind that GBA Strategic Partner ABA Insurance Services (ABAIS) is committed to serving and supporting banks by providing quality insurance and excellent customer service. We know you may have a local agent or broker you prefer to use, so the ABA Insurance program will work with your local agent to develop quotes for you. Check in with Pat Williams at ABA Insurance Services for more details. This unique bank-owned, banker-directed program has been supporting the banking industry for over 30 years.

Upcoming One-Day Events: Cash Flow, CRA & Fair Lending, Internal Audit

Mark your calendar for these GBA seminars coming up this fall in Macon. Click the links below for more information and to register. Sponsorship opportunities are available. With questions, contact Jenna Lynn Warner, 404.420.2035.

Recruit, Retain and Develop the Best Bankers with GBA Career Solutions

GBA Job Bank - GBA will post open positions, free of charge, for GBA members. See the open positions in Georgia here. We will also post professional summaries for bank-job seekers on our Bankers Available page. To make the process easy and answer any questions, we've developed this
Q & A. Please contact Katina Prokos, 404.420.2021.
GBA Strategic Partner BankTalentHQ - The central feature of BankTalentHQ is its national bank-job board. Other key benefits include: resume search access, regional and national reach for your open positions, frequent special offers and custom sales/coaching programs. Visit BankTalentHQ to learn more. See the open positions in Georgia here, or search regionally or nationally here.
GBA’s Career Paths for Bankers™ - GBA’s Career Paths for Bankers™ is the most unique, organized and easy-to-use career development resource available for bankers and banks. GBA’s pioneering career development resource is unlike any other in the banking industry. Click here to start mapping your banking career today.
Why do people choose careers in banking? Whatever their talents, interests and educational background, there is a career in banking for them. Here are few good reasons to share with folks you know.
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...
Colony Bank
The Bank of Hazlehurst
Century Bank & Trust
Greater Community Bank
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.