Today’s Senate Banking hearing on BSA reform is an effort to move past obstacles to action in this Congress to set the groundwork for rapid action next year. Chairman Crapo (R-ID) pressed for bipartisan BSA reform, although he acknowledged that specific changes have not been agreed upon. He and Ranking Member Brown (D-OH) support requiring beneficial-ownership disclosure at the company-formation level, as did witnesses from FinCEN, the OCC, and the FBI. However, Ranking Member Brown led progressive opposition to raising suspicious activity report (SAR) and currency transaction report (CTR) thresholds, while Sens. Toomey (R-PA) and Kennedy (R-LA) urged an increase. FinCEN Director Blanco and FBI Financial Crimes Section Chief D’Antuono argued that raising the threshold would eliminate critical financial intelligence. Acknowledging this concern, Sen. Moran (R-KS) suggested consolidating SAR and CTR reporting requirements to reduce industry burden.
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