Expert Testimony

Woodstock staff is regularly invited to present expert testimony before the local, state, and federal legislatures, as well as regulatory agencies.
May 25, 2006

Testimony before the US House of Representatives Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on OTS’s actions to weaken CRA.  Comments offered suggestions to promote improvements to CRA that would increase access to lending, investments, and services in low- and moderate-income markets such as the requiring the continued reporting of small business lending data for mid-sized banks and thrifts.  They also requested that the OTS collect data on new retail accounts opened for low- and moderate-income households; and promoting investment in declining and underserved rural markets.  

October 5, 2005
Testimony of Marva Williams, Woodstock Institute Senior Vice President requesting conditional approval of the H& R Block application to become a de novo thrift regulated by the OTS.  Approval should only be granted if H&R Block makes a commitment to affirmatively address the lending patterns of H&R Block's subprime affiliate, Option One, commit to reducing the impact of refund anticipation loans on recipients of the Earned Income Tax Credit, and several other issues.
March 8, 2005
Marva Williams, Woodstock Institute Senior Vice President, comments in favor of H.B. 1100 creating the Illinois Payday Loan Reform Act and discusses the five key consumer protections included in the bill.
April 23, 2004
Marva Williams, Woodstock Institute Senior Vice President, states that Woodstock Institute neither supports nor opposes the proposed acqusition of Bank One by New York based JP Morgan Chase.  She also states that federal banking regulators should take a bank's performance under a community reinvestment agreement into consideration during their ongoing CRA public examinations.
March 30, 2004
Malcolm Bush, Woodstock Institute President, testifies before the Chicago City Council on the impact of subprime and predatory lending.
March 29, 2004
Marva Williams, Woodstock Institute Senior Vice President, testifies before the Chicago City Council Committee on Finance on the impact of the proposed merger of Bank One and JP Morgan Chase.  Her testimony includes a summary of Bank One's previous CRA agreement and the new Memorandum of Understanding of Community Reinvestment Goals.
March 24, 2004
Geoff Smith, Woodstock Institute project director, discusses Woodstock Institute's research documenting the relationship between concentrated subprime lending and neighborhood foreclosures.
March 5, 2003
Testimony of Geoff Smith, Woodstock Institute research associate, to the Illinois Office of Banks and Real Estate on several proposed changes.  Woodstock opposes changes to the regulation of high risk loans because the changes do not add any substantive protections.  Woodstock supports the proposed licensing changes and the increase in the net worth requirements for mortgage lenders and brokers.
May 2, 2002
Marva Williams, Woodstock Institute Senior Vice President before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs discussing the development of affordable transaction accounts to help lower income people access the financial mainstream. 
June 3, 1998
Woodstock President Malcolm Bush argues that the State Farm application will establish a critical precedent for the terms under which insurance companies enter the banking business and in this case seriously violates the letter and intent of the CRAand its regulations.