California Attorney General Bill Lockyer is accusing federal banking regulators of exceeding their authority by trying to block the state´s efforts to protect consumers. Lockyer told a legislative hearing Wednesday that the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is ignoring federal laws that envision a dual role for state and federal regulators.
A spokesman for the comptroller´s office, Robert Garsson, disagrees, noting that federal courts have ruled in the office´s favor in two lawsuits involving the state.
One lawsuit challenged the state´s efforts to regulate when mortgage lenders can start charging interest. The other challenged a law requiring credit card lenders to warn consumers about how long it would take to pay off their debts by making only minimum monthly payments.