ATMIA Advocacy Efforts at Full Throttle

Monday, June 05, 2017

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by David Tente

SIOUX FALLS, SD, June 5, 2017.  The ATM Industry Association (ATMIA) has released a summary of its recent advocacy activities, which includes a letter to the new Trump administration.  Advocacy is a critical dimension of ATMIA’s global mission.  Recent efforts have been exceptionally intensive and span the breadth of city, state, and federal regulatory regimes. 

In its letter to President Trump, ATMIA introduced itself as the global representative of all ATM industry constituents and identified several specific issues of the highest importance and in great need of attention.  Leading the list was “Operation Choke Point”, a well-intended program that turned into a train wreck, threatening the existence of some ATM operators and other small businesses across the country.  ATMIA met last year with Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer in support of his Financial Institution Customer Protection Act of 2016 (H.R. 766), which would curtail these illegitimate practices.  The measure is now in the process of being re-introduced.

ATM operators today face a flood of legislative activity at the state level.  Nearly 300 legislative alerts have been received so far this year for 28 states.  Perhaps the most egregious proposal is for an amendment to Illinois H.B. 1274, which would limit the total of surcharge, convenience, and bank out-of-network fees to a total of $1.00 per ATM transaction.  On April 12 ATMIA sent a letter to Rep. Arthur Turner, the measure’s primary sponsor, explaining the disastrous impact it would have on consumer access to cash in Illinois. 

A Cleveland City Council proposal late last year to establish a $2,000 limit on ATM vault cash was followed by a similar proposal in the Ohio state legislature this past March.  Both measures were aimed at reducing the number of ATM thefts.  Letters from ATMIA to Councilman Anthony Brancatelli and Ohio Rep. Tom Patton explained that the proposed actions would have little impact on crime, but significantly increase ATM operators’ costs – putting the viability of most retail ATMs (and convenient consumer access to cash) at risk.  Both measures now seem to have stalled after stiff opposition.

All ATMIA members can sign up for these Legislative Alerts, which track any proposed legislation that might impact ATM owners/operators/acquirers.  They also have free access to ATM Compliance Profiles for all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.  Compliance Profiles are updated annually and represent current law with regard to ATM compliance.    

The complete update on ATMA advocacy efforts can be downloaded from the ATMIA website.  For more information regarding specific industry issues, contact ATMIA US Executive Director, David Tente.

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