Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation

 

Maryland Office of Financial Regulation Receives National Reaccreditation

 

Washington, D.C. -- The Conference of State Bank Supervisors announced this week that the Maryland Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) has received its fourth consecutive certificate of accreditation from CSBS, certifying that the department maintains high standards and practices in state banking supervision.

CSBS reaccredited the department for a five-year period on Feb. 15, 2008. Maryland OFR was first accredited by CSBS in July 1992 and as of September 30, 2007, supervised 48 commercial banks with total assets of $30 billion and two savings banks with assets of $168 million.

Besides commercial banks and savings banks, the Office is also responsible for the regulation of state chartered credit unions, and trust companies, and state-licensed financial entities including consumer finance companies, mortgage lenders and brokers, consumer debt collection agencies, check cashers and money transmitters.

“We are pleased to be recognized by our peers for this achievement,” said Sarah Bloom Raskin, Maryland’s Commissioner of Financial Regulation.

The accreditation review begins with completion of an extensive self-evaluation questionnaire on all department operations: administration and finance, personnel, training, examination, supervision, and legislative powers. Next, an external review team comprised of veteran state and federal regulators performs an on-site review and presents its findings to an audit team and to the Performance Standards Committee, which votes on the reports of the review team and the audit team.

The report and scores are based on documentary evidence, such as a random sample of examination reports and other files. The CSBS Review Team conducted a thorough review of the Division’s self-evaluation questionnaire, interviewed key management personnel and a cross section of examiners and reviewed the reports of examination.

“The accreditation process provides an objective critical analysis to ensure we are current in our examination policies and procedures,” Raskin said. “It also confirms that we employ nationally recognized best practices in regulatory supervision and oversight.”

“Commissioner Raskin and her staff are to be congratulated on establishing and maintaining the high standards set by the program. To maintain their accreditation, state banking departments must work to keep up with the changing industry that they regulate. The Maryland OFR has demonstrated that it has met this challenge,” said CSBS President and CEO Neil Milner.

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CSBS is the nationwide organization for state banking, representing the bank regulators of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, and approximately 6,200 state-chartered financial institutions. The Conference is responsible for defending state authority to determine banking structure and the products and services state-chartered institutions can offer and for improving the quality of state bank supervision by providing department performance evaluation and accreditation programs and supervisory education/training programs for state banking department personnel.

Information Contact: Georgia High, CSBS Vice President of Accreditation and Certification, (202) 728-5706, ghigh@csbs.org