In Washington, lawmakers appear to have been successful in forging an agreement on a short-term spending bill to keep the government running until December 11. Governor Cuomo extended an Executive Order on commercial evictions and foreclosures.
State Legislative Developments
- The State Legislature remains adjourned, as it is not yet certain when they will reconvene next for a future legislative session. NYBA remains engaged with legislative members and staff on a number of issues.
Other State Developments
- Governor Cuomo issued Executive Order 202.64, which extends and modifies a number of previously issued Executive Orders and laws. Executive Order 202.64 specifically extends the current commercial eviction and foreclosure moratorium through October 20, 2020.
- The NYS Department of Health updated the list of states subject to the COVID-19 Travel Advisory guidance pursuant to Executive Order 205, adding Arizona, Minnesota, Nevada, Rhode Island and Wyoming. The Travel Advisory list currently includes: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Puerto Rico and Guam. The Travel Advisory Guidance outlines that travelers coming from these states into NYS will now be subject to the quarantine requirement, and provides guidance for essential workers. Travelers coming to New York from the designated states are also required to fill out the Department of Health Traveler Form. An electronic version of the NYS Dept. of Health Traveler Form is available here.
- The Empire State Development Corp. continues to provide updated information on NY Forward, which encompasses the phased reopening of the NYS regions. All regions of NYS are in Phase 4, while certain restrictions and protocols remain in place for specific industries. Guidance on each phase of reopening is available here.
- An updated chart of all coronavirus banking related activity specific to New York State is available on our website. The chart continues to be updated on a regular basis.
Federal Legislative Developments
- The House of Representatives passed a stop gap spending bill, after much negotiation, to avert a government shutdown on December 11. The Senate has taken a procedural vote to advance the measure, and expects to pass it next week. Congress is expected to enter an intensely partisan period surrounding the confirmation of a new U.S. Supreme Court Justice, as a result of the death on Friday of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Federal Regulatory Developments
- The IRS issued new guidance stating that lenders should not file information returns or supply statements to borrowers to report the amount of qualifying PPP loan forgiveness. Under the CARES Act, PPP forgiveness income is not to be included in the gross income of the borrower.
- The FHFA announced it would extend until October 31 its forbearance purchase and other allowances related to COVID-19.
- The Federal Reserve released an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) to seek input on its own version of Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) reform. Earlier this year, the OCC and FDIC finalized new CRA regulations. The Fed, however, has its own vision for the first revamp of the 30-year-old law that includes “tailoring CRA supervision based on size, business model, local market conditions, etc.”
- The Federal Reserve updated its FAQs for the Main Street Lending Program in order to clarify that lenders should consider their pre-pandemic conditions, as well as a post-pandemic forecast when underwriting the loans.
- The OCC issued an interpretive letter yesterday clarifying that national banks can place assets in reserve accounts that are tied to stablecoins in a "hosted wallet." Stablecoins are a cryptocurrency typically pegged to a government currency. A hosted wallet typically refers to a kind of cryptocurrency account that is safeguarded by a third party.
- The New York City Council introduced legislation this week to support measures related to public banking. Intro. 2100-2020 would require the Director of Management and Budget to issue to the Speaker of the Council, and to post on the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) website, quarterly reports on the City’s use of non-depository financial institutions for the immediately-preceding quarter, by January 31, 2021. Such reports would detail the fees and returns for a wide variety of financial services, including money market accounts and bond issues, but excluding pension investments.
- The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on the PPP forgiveness process that determined the average completion time for forgiveness form is approximately three hours. Representatives from lender organizations countered, however, that the average time is more like 15 hours at a minimum.
- The GAO released another report this week, pegging the banks’ 2018 costs of the BSA/AML compliance at between 0.4% and 2.4% of total operating expenses.