Protections For Franchise Businesses Included In Financial Reform Bill
June 25, 2010 // Franchising.com // WASHINGTON, The International Franchise Association applauds Senate and House conferees for protecting franchised small businesses during consideration of the Restoring American Financial Stability Act agreed to earlier today.
"While significant concerns remain about the overall impact of the new financial regulations on our economy, we are pleased that conferees listened to our members regarding the expansion of regulatory authority for both the Federal Trade Commission and the newly created Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (CFPB) over franchised businesses," IFA President & CEO Stephen Caldeira said. "Franchise businesses had nothing to do with the economic collapse on Wall Street so they should not be penalized with expanded regulatory oversight that hampers the industry's ability to grow and create jobs."
Caldeira said that the conferees rejection of an attempt to expand the regulatory authority of the Federal Trade Commission was a significant victory for all sectors of the franchise business community. Under the House-passed bill, the FTC, which already administers franchise disclosure regulations, would have been granted sweeping new authorities to issue regulations impacting virtually any retail business.
"We are glad that conferees realized that using the economic meltdown to expand government authority over small businesses was ill-advised and detrimental to job creation," Caldeira said.
The final package also includes IFA supported language offered by Sen. Durbin (D-IL) to limit the "swipe" fees credit card companies and banks charge merchants and retailers, resulting in an important victory for franchised small businesses, which often operate on narrow margins.
Finally, bipartisan language offered by Sens. Snowe (R-ME) and Pryor (D-AR) to require the new CFPB to consider the impact of proposed regulations on small businesses was included in the package to ensure new rules do not unfairly impact this important economic sector.
"The final legislation rightfully requires the newly established CFPB to inform the public how its rules impact small business," Caldeira said. "We strongly supported this provision as one way to avoid further erosion of the access to capital for small businesses. We are glad that the conferees resisted heavy lobbying from the Administration to block these protections so that small businesses will have more transparency in the financial regulatory process."
The International Franchise Association is the world's oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. Celebrating 50 years of excellence, education and advocacy, IFA protects, enhances and promotes franchising through government relations, public relations and educational programs. Through its awareness campaign highlighting the theme, Franchising: Building Local Businesses, One Opportunity at a Time, IFA promotes the 21 million jobs and $2.3 trillion of economic activity generated by franchising. IFA members include franchise companies in over 90 different business format categories, individual franchisees and companies that support the industry in marketing, law and business development.