Now that a new Congress is in session, the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) and 170 state and national merchant groups are communicating to both branches of Congress about the importance of keeping debit reforms intact, which were enacted as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
In a letter sent to all legislators, the merchant groups said, “These reforms brought a level of transparency (for the first time, small businesses could see and know exactly how much they would be charged for a debit transaction from one of the covered institutions) and a level of competition into a market where fees were traditionally set collectively behind closed doors and without regard to the costs imposed on American consumers and Main Street retailers. It is important to note, this amendment passed with over 60 votes and strong bipartisan support after open debate on the Senate floor seven years ago. This was an essential first step to move America’s electronic payments system toward a truly open and free market.”
With 60 new members in office for the 115th Congress, NACS and its industry allies are communicating the need to maintain current debit reforms. The coalition believes if debit reforms are repealed, retailers will once again be put under the price-fixing control of Visa and MasterCard, and the debit swipe fees paid will skyrocket.
NACS is asking its members to write to their U.S. representatives and ask them to oppose legislation that will end current debit reforms.