Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on the Move

The new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has a website now that is running with the logo "Know Before You Owe" prominently displayed. Elizabeth Warren, Special Advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, has a short video that doesn't speak directly to any particular changes the CFPB will make, but assures all that they are at work and listening to consumer responses.

Also on the website is Elizabeth Warren's testimony from May 24th before The Subcommittee on TARP, Financial Services, and Bailouts of Public and Private Programs Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in order to determine the accountability and oversight for the agency. You may remember the news about this hearing where Representative Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, accused Warren of lying during her March testimony, where Warren had previously appeared to answer questions concerning the CFPA and its function and power structure (See Decorum Breaks Down at House Hearing, New York Times).

Of course, both the CFPB and Warren herself have faced strong opposition from Republican lawmakers. It seems that this time around, the advances in consumer protections were not secured by simply passing the Consumer Financial Protection Act. Appropriations and confirming an official head of the CFPB remain open issues while the CFPB continues its organization. On the consumer front, I am pleased to note that the new website contains a number of consumer oriented videos and outreach to the banking community. Being a big fan of the power of information, it is a good sign that the CFPB has taken their first steps in reaching consumers in the electronic mediums. Oh, and you can even share the videos on Facebook or Twitter, for all you consumer rights junkies . . .


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