Next week, Kansas banks and credit unions will have the ear of Congress as they testify about how they survived the financial meltdown and what can be done to prevent future ones.
The U.S. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations is holding a series of hearings, “End of Excess.” And one of those hearings will be in Lawrence.
The hearings were inspired by a 2009 Time cover story that argued in the aftermath of the country’s near economic collapse that Americans needed to curtail a lifestyle of over indulgence and start spending more conservatively.
The first hearing was held in Washington, D.C., and focused on American’s addiction to debt and leverage.
The second and third hearings, which are open to the public, will be next week in Overland Park and Lawrence. U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., who chairs the subcommittee, will be at the meeting along with a number of other members of Congress from the region.
Brandon Naylor, communications director for Moore’s office, said the hearings offer a chance to examine the economic downturn.
“We want to hold a mirror up to the financial crisis and ask ‘what happened?’” Naylor said. “Oversight investigation isn’t just about looking back. It’s also about looking forward. How do we prevent something like this from happening in the future.”
A hearing — “Too Big Has Failed: Learning from Midwest Banks and Credit Unions” — is set for 9:30 a.m. Monday at Johnson County Community College’s Capitol Federal Conference Center, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park.
Community banks, regional banks and credit unions will discuss their recent performances and success during the economic crisis.
“We want to find out what small community Midwestern banks did right. Because you look at the numbers and they don’t have the defaults that much larger banks had on loans,” Naylor said.
At 10 a.m. Tuesday, the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics will host a hearing — “Empowering Consumers: Can Financial Literacy Education Prevent Another Financial Crisis.” That discussion will focus on the role educated consumers can play in establishing a more stable financial future. The hearing will be held in the Dole Institute’s Simons Media Room, 2350 Petefish Dr.