With Mortgage Crisis at Center Stage, House Panel Won’t Forget BSA Reform, Lawmaker Says

By Matt Squire

The U.S. House Financial Services Committee will move forward with plans to reform Bank Secrecy Act reporting requirements this year as it shifts its primary focus toward mortgage lending practices and housing issues, committee chairman Barney Frank said. The flood of suspicious activity reports (SARs) filed by financial institutions each year may be hurting law enforcement efforts to investigate financial crimes, Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat, said Thursday. He noted that the U.S. Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) received more than 1 million SARs in 2006. "I think what we have done with the financial crimes people is to tell...