WASHINGTON—A bipartisan group of senators led by Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA) and Tom Cotton (R-AK) has introduced the Illicit Cash Act (S.2563), which would require companies to register their owners with the Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and seek to modernize and improve the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) efforts.
Similar bills are also being considered in the House.
The new legislation comes at the same time the Government Accountability Office has also released a report on the Bank Secrecy Act that includes the following four recommendations for the Director of FinCEN to consider:
- Prioritize the inclusion of the primary SRO conducting BSA examinations in the Bank Secrecy Act Advisory Group on a more consistent basis
- Explore providing direct BSA data access to the National Futures Association
- Review options for FinCEN to more consistently and publicly provide summary data on the usefulness of BSA reporting
- Review options for establishing a mechanism through which law enforcement agencies may provide regular and institution-specific feedback on BSA reporting
The Senate bill – as proposed – would also update the definition of "coins and currency" to include digital currency and seeks to help financial institutions, like credit unions, share information on suspicious activity and streamline reporting, NAFCU noted in its analysis.
Other sponsors of the Senate bill include Sens. Doug Jones (D-AL), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), John Kennedy (R-LA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), and Jerry Moran (R-KS).