National Conference of State Legislatures calls on Congress to amend the Controlled Substances Act to remove cannabis from scheduling, thus enabling financial institutions the ability to provide banking services to cannabis related businesses. NCSL additionally acknowledges each of its members will have differing and sometimes conflicting views of cannabis and how to regulate it, but in allowing each state to craft its own regulations, we may increase transparency, public safety, and economic development where there is support to do so.
NCSL has consistently and strongly advocated for state sovereignty in financial services regulation. NCSL has opposed any federal preemption of state legislative or regulatory authority in financial services. A high burden of proof that federal action is necessary, such as a national financial crisis, should be met before any preemption of state financial services laws and regulations is warranted.
The dual system enables state governments to apply laws and regulations to banks and thrifts that serve the needs of local economies and that respond to the values and concerns of local citizens. In recognition of the advantages of the dual system to the public and to the health of the financial services industry, NCSL opposes any efforts by the federal government to restrict state authority to charter, supervise, or regulate the powers of state chartered banks and thrifts.
NCSL opposes any federal attempts to tax state banks for federal oversight services already performed by the appropriate state banking agencies and departments. Nonetheless, NCSL recognizes that the states have a duty to use their powers responsibly and in a way that does not endanger the deposit insurance system and thereby the nation's financial stability.
Federal Regulatory Consolidation NCSL recognizes the need for the federal government to reduce the federal regulatory burden that can impede the economic vitality of our nation's financial services industries. In consolidating the federal banking regulators, Congress must ensure that any consolidation does not invalidate the regulatory independence of the dual banking system. NCSL opposes any federal regulatory consolidation plan that would:. It would be detrimental to the well-being of the dual banking system for Congress to tamper with present oversight cooperation between state banking departments, the FDIC and the Federal Reserve.
Federal Preemption NCSL strongly believes that a high burden of proof must be established before federal preemption of state banking authority is ever justified and that only Congress—and not federal regulatory agencies—can preempt the actions of elected state leaders. NCSL strongly opposes any effort by the OCC to assert its regulatory authority to weaken the standard of preemption or shield national banks and bank operating subsidiaries from state consumer protection laws and enforcement.
Moreover, NCSL encourages Congress to eliminate the judicial deference given to the OCC by federal courts in challenges to state financial services laws and to restrain OCC abuse of its regulatory authority to preempt state laws. Dual Chartering of Credit Unions NCSL believes that state credit union supervisors have the primary responsibility for assuring the safety and soundness of credit unions chartered by and operating under state law and regulation.
However, NCUA regulations and policies should be crafted in a way that minimizes the preemption of state authority. NCSL opposes any effort by the Administration and Congress to erode the dual chartering system for credit unions by preempting state credit union laws and regulations that do not adversely impact the financial well-being of state chartered credit unions and thus the NCUSIF. Any preemption of state credit union laws or regulatory authority must be justified only by a clear and certain threat to the credit unions' share insurance fund by those credit unions that are federally insured.
Consumer Protection State legislatures and Congress must periodically consider legislation: to ensure consumer access to basic financial services; to protect the privacy of financial consumers and the security of their personal financial information; to provide protection for consumers from abusive lending practices; to ensure disclosure of information about credit terms, interest rates, fees, and balances; to regulate branch closing; and to otherwise protect the consuming public.
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In recognition that this is an area of overlapping federal and state jurisdiction, NCSL will ordinarily not oppose such federal consumer protection measures, provided that there is no preemption of complementary state consumer protection legislation. Federal legislation should not prohibit state legislatures and state regulators from providing additional protections for consumers of financial services. Furthermore, as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau established in Dodd-Frank commences its role as the federal agency responsible for regulating consumer protection and enforcing applicable federal laws NCSL opposes any action that preempts state consumer protections law or undermines the principles of federalism.
Finally, as online financial services continue to grow, clear rules must be established as to which jurisdiction's consumer protections apply to a given transaction. Financial Services and Economic Development NCSL recognizes that racial, ethnic, or gender discrimination by financial services institutions may have an impact on the ability of residents in distressed communities to obtain financial assistance.
State legislators also recognize the need for financial institutions to make safe, sound and profitable investments. NCSL, recognizing the responsibilities that each state has for financial institution regulation and solvency and for providing for fair lending to their constituents, believes that each state legislature has the responsibility to address the unique needs of its state.
Likewise, the federal government as regulator of federal financial institutions must make the same determinations and act accordingly. However, Congress must not mandate federal guidelines that impede the states' abilities to regulate financial services. Securities Regulation NCSL recognizes that the federal government has an interest in efficient and fair capital markets. NCSL is concerned that the preemption of state securities laws and regulations will serve only to erode investor trust in the capital markets by further weakening a system designed to protect investors and putting the financial well-being of hard-working Americans at risk.
NCSL opposes such federal preemption and the creation of self-regulatory organizations that usurp state authority. Mortgage Industry Currently states regulate a significant portion of mortgage lending. Federalizing this area of supervision will displace the state regulatory system that has rapidly evolved and could erode, or even eliminate, the current authority the states have to approve, supervise and bar mortgage professionals.
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The local nature of real estate and consumer protection necessitates direct state authority. This state system enhances consumer protection and streamlines the licensing process for regulators and the industry. States long have sought to balance the economic value of information sharing with reasonable safeguards against the unnecessary disclosure and inappropriate acquisition of sensitive nonpublic personal financial information, such as credit information, account numbers, account balances, and Social Security numbers.
Understanding local and regional economic situations and the unique needs of consumers within these markets, states consistently have ensured the protection of sensitive nonpublic personal financial information. State legislatures recognize that financial information security is an area of overlapping federal and state jurisdiction. Therefore, NCSL does not oppose federal baseline standards for the protection of financial information, provided that these standards generally do not preempt complementary state laws.
NCSL believes that states should have the authority and flexibility to adopt standards for the acquisition, retention, disclosure and sharing of financial information by and among financial institutions and nonaffiliated third parties that address local concerns or respond in a timely way to incidences of neglect or abuse that may be local or regional in nature.
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NCSL specifically believes that Congress should preserve state authority to exceed federal baseline standards for information sharing among nonaffiliated third parties. Credit Reporting NCSL acknowledges the benefit of a uniform national credit reporting system to the nation's economy. In doing so, NCSL supports the continued exemption of the state laws that were in existence prior to the Amendments and thus are currently exempted from the preemption provisions. NCSL also supports allowing state financial regulators and attorneys general to enforce any new federal data security breach notification standards.
In the event that Congress decides to preempt state law, NCSL urges that the preemption be narrowly construed to preempt only state laws that are inconsistent with the federal standard while preserving state laws that apply to entities that may be excluded from the federal act. Additionally, should Congress decide to preempt state data security breach notification laws, NCSL would support a strong federal law that would require notification of the affected consumers when sensitive personally identifiable information has been, or is reasonably believed to have been, accessed or acquired.
In this instance, exceptions should be made only when it is concluded that there is no significant risk that the breach has resulted in, or will result in, harm to the individual whose information has been breached. A corporation is defined as a legal entity or structure created under the authority of a state's laws, consisting of a person or group of persons who become shareholders.
The entity's existence is considered separate and distinct from that of its members. A corporation can enter into contracts, sue and be sued, pay taxes separately from its owners, and do the other things necessary to conduct business. The ability to regulate and set standards for incorporation law had long resided within the individual states. Many states rely on the revenue generated by incorporation fees, corporate taxes and other fees as a way to fund many of their public needs.
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States determine what the articles of incorporation need to involve and have the ability to both tighten and lift barriers for corporate formation. One of the key reasons for forming a corporation is the limited liability protection provided to its owners. Because a corporation is considered a separate legal entity, the shareholders have limited liability for the corporation's debts. The personal assets of shareholders are not at risk for satisfying corporate debts or liabilities. In , after the terrorist attack on the United States, the U.
Treasury Department was tasked with tracking the funding of terrorists cells and groups. One of the findings of these early studies was the concern that state corporate formation statutes may have allowed terrorists and other criminals in laundering money and hiding assets. In , a number of states were identified by the Treasury Department as having insufficient requirements for the identification of members, managers or the beneficial owners of the corporation or other limited liability entities.
Treasury Department released studies regarding what they considered the lax corporate formation requirements by states. Almost every state was cited by the GAO report for inadequate corporate formation information requirements. In late , the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations of the United States Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs held a hearing on the reports and what the Subcommittee claimed was the states failure to respond. In February , some in Congress served noticed that if the states failed to address the findings of the studies, then Congress would set a national standard for corporate formation and registration.
A special Task Force was established by the Executive Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures to study the federal reports, and the congressional hearing and to determine if the concerns were valid. After a year of meetings and hearings, the NCSL Task Force has found that while some state statutes may lack some of the transparency demanded by the federal agencies, the wholesale preemption of state corporate formation statutes is unwarranted and unnecessary.
Therefore, the National Conference of State Legislatures will oppose any unwarranted effort at the federal level to preempt state incorporation laws without proper justification that such laws have led to criminal or terror activities. According to the U.
Department of Commerce report, over 45 million jobs are directly and indirectly supported by IP-intensive industries as significant drivers of GDP, exports, and wages in every state, and the average worker in an IP- intensive industry earns 30 percent higher wages than those of non IP-intensive industries. Given the important role that IP plays in sustaining a long-term economic growth, policymakers should prioritize innovation and protecting intellectual property.
Protecting and enforcing the IP rights of businesses is critical to advancing global economic recovery, driving competitiveness and export growth, and creating high-quality jobs. IP protections, though vital, must be balanced with other priorities, including the right of citizens to access affordable drugs and medical devices and the ability of state governments to contain Medicaid costs.
NCSL calls upon all levels of governments to work cooperatively with the private sector, nonprofits, and academia to create, develop and implement robust pro-IP awareness and enforcement. Finally, NCSL supports existing efforts to shut down the top illegal rogue websites globally that are willfully selling counterfeit goods and facilitating digital theft. The Internet defies a detailed one-size-fits-all approach to public policy and regulation.
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America's federal and state lawmakers, as well as policy makers from other countries should be guided by principles that foster the Internet's development while protecting the security and privacy of individual users. Our nation's state legislatures are well-aware of the impact that access to the Internet and electronic commerce have on the economic vitality of our states and communities.
State legislatures also recognize that the marketplace for electronic commerce is global, not just in the United States. State legislatures share the concern of many in Congress that ill-conceived over-regulation and taxation of the Internet and electronic commerce services could harm our nation's ability to compete globally. However, state legislatures also recognize that they have an obligation to act, when and if necessary, to protect the general welfare of their constituents. As the use of the Internet continues to expand, any future or existing regulations must be balanced against market forces in a competitive and technologically neutral manner, as government must not choose the winners or losers of the digital age.
Nothing in this policy statement is to be construed as limiting or affecting the right of any state to regulate alcohol according to its local norms and standards pursuant to the 21st Amendment. NCSL opposes unnecessary or unwarranted federal legislation or regulation that would impede efforts by states to promote access to the Internet, enhance competition or increased consumer choice, or ensure the security of personal information of consumers conducting electronic commerce transactions. The National Conference of State Legislatures NCSL supports the following principles in formulating laws and regulations that impact the Internet and electronic commerce:.
With the proliferation of data online, including the internet of things and mobile devices, the regulation of the collection, sales, and transmission of consumer data is increasingly a priority for state and federal lawmakers. NCSL recognizes the importance of consumer data privacy and security protections, as well as the role of the states as leaders in establishing those protections for their constituents.
In response to many high-profile security breaches and violations of consumer privacy, data privacy and security have become the subject of increasing regulation, most notably the General Data Protection Regulation GDPR in Europe. States and the federal government are working to protect against data breaches, mishandling of data, and non-transparent sale of consumer data in a way that balances myriad competing interests and allows for innovation while safeguarding the rights of consumers.
Congress has yet to enact any significant or comprehensive legislation that addresses consumer data privacy and security protection.
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