The CFPB announced last Friday the planned formation of a "Taskforce on Federal Consumer Financial Law." According to the Bureau, "[t]he taskforce will examine the existing legal and regulatory environment facing consumers and financial services providers and report recommendations on ways to improve and strengthen consumer financial laws and regulations to CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger."
The Bureau says that the taskforce is "inspired" by a commission established by the Consumer Credit Protection Act in 1968, which issued a 1972 report recommending a variety of reforms to strengthen consumer protections (as well as recommendations to loosen certain restrictions on the S&L industry, which turned out to be disastrous for consumers as well as the industry itself). A piece by David Lazarus in today's LA Times questions whether a task force sponsored by this Administration's CFPB is likely to be inspired by the earlier commission to produce recommendations for improving consumer protections, or will instead recommend cutbacks of existing protections to facilitate predatory practices by the financial services industry.
According to the CFPB, "[a]ny interested person may apply for membership on the taskforce." The agency says it is looking for "[e]xpertise in consumer protection and consumer financial products or services," experience researching and analyzing consumer issues, a "record of senior public or academic service," and recognition for "professional achievements and objectivity in economics, econometrics, or law." The taskforce will consist of a chair and approximately six members, who will serve for a year and be assisted in their efforts by detailees from the CFPB and other agencies.
Applications are due next Friday, October 25. Application instructions are available here.