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Emanuel Cleaver

10/22/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 10/22/2019 17:57

Congressman Cleaver's Anti-Money Laundering Bill Passes House of Representatives

(Washington, D.C.) - Today, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 2513, the Corporate Transparency Act of 2019, by a vote of 249-173. Included in the text of H.R. 2513 was legislation introduced by United States Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II (D-MO), known as the COUNTER Act. Cleaver's legislation would implement a number of changes and additions to the to the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), which dictates banks' responsibilities to help the government detect and root out illegal financial transactions. Cleaver's bill passed out of the Financial Services Committee with unanimous support (55-0) and would be the largest reform to the BSA since 2001.

'After a lot of hard work to come to a bipartisan consensus, I'm extremely proud that we were able to pass the most significant anti-money laundering reform since 2001,' said Congressman Cleaver. 'So much has changed in the past two decades, and the national security challenges we face today are profoundly different from those we faced at the turn of the century. It's critical that we bring our banking regulations into the 21st century and give financial institutions the tools necessary to protect American consumers and companies from modern threats. I believe this bill is a big step forward in that regard.'

'The COUNTER Act, by bettering the Bank Secrecy Act, would protect our national security and make our anti-money laundering regime more effective, and I'm proud that we were able to combine this key bill with the Corporate Transparency Act,' said Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY). 'Together, this package is a huge win for transparency and anti-money laundering efforts and I hope the Senate will act quickly to send it to the President's desk.'

The COUNTER Act would empower the U.S. Treasury Department to protect our national security and safeguard our financial systems by codifying an information-sharing program between law enforcement, financial institutions, and the Treasury Department, enabling the detection and capture of illegal activity. In addition, the bill will provide needed relief to small banks and credit unions by updating outdated regulations weighing on these smaller institutions while still reinforcing our national security. The bill would also close a number of loopholes that have allowed for financial crimes to be committed, helping to pull our banking regulations into the 21st century and positioning us to face the challenges of tomorrow.

Congressman Cleaver and the Financial Services Committee have been proactive in researching and regulating the innovative technologies of the 21st century, creating taskforces to look into FinTech and Artificial intelligence, one of which Congressman Cleaver has been appointed. One way the COUNTER Act fosters innovation is by creating 'Innovation Labs' which encourage financial regulators to work with companies to implement inventive approaches to meeting lawful requirements. These innovation labs ensure companies will have the flexibility needed to implement new technologies while still complying with existing law and fortifying our national security.

Emanuel Cleaver, II is the U.S. Representative for Missouri's Fifth Congressional District, which includes Kansas City, Independence, Lee's Summit, Raytown, Grandview, Sugar Creek, Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Oak Grove, North Kansas City, Gladstone, Claycomo, and all of Ray, Lafayette, and Saline Counties. He is a member of the exclusive House Financial Services Committee; Chairman of the House Subcommittee on National Security, International Development, and Monetary Policy; member of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress; member of the Committee on Homeland Security; and a Senior Whip of the Democratic Caucus. For more information, please contact Matthew Helfant at 202-225-4535 or [email protected] a high-resolution photo of Congressman Cleaver is available here.