TO KEEP CASH STRONG FOR AMERICA’S CONSUMERS AND BUSINESSES
Washington, DC; May 19, 2022 – The National ATM Council, Inc. applauds yesterday’s bipartisan vote by the House Financial Services Committee in favor of HR-4395, the Payment Choice Act of 2022. The bill is designed to preserve a choice for consumers to use cash as “legal tender” at retail establishments throughout America.
“We thank Chairwoman Waters (D-CA), Rep. Garcia (D-TX), and the original co-sponsors of HR-4395, Reps. Payne (D-NJ) and Smith (R-NJ) for their leadership, and express our appreciation to the diverse bipartisan Committee Members who supported this legislation and worked hard to secure its favorable reporting by the Committee," said George Sarantopoulos, NAC’s Chair and Founder/CEO of Brooklyn, NY-based Access One Solutions. “This important measure is essential," he added, "to ensuring the ongoing strength and security of the U.S. Dollar as a universal payment method accepted at retail establishments everywhere in our nation. The Payment Choice Act is needed to make it clear that cash acceptance is part of doing business in America, end of story."
HR-4395 has received solid support from consumer/public interest and privacy advocates, as well as from leading domestic and global business organizations. As noted during the Committee Markup, there are as many as 55 million Americans who are unbanked/or underbanked and therefore must rely on cash as their preferred form of payment for all their purchases. Many other Americans just want to have the option to pay with cash for everyday transactions.
The final Committee vote of 32-17 in favor of the bill included yeas from all voting Democrats, along with five highly-regarded Republican members: Reps. John Rose (TN-6th); Warren Davidson (OH-8th); David Kustoff (TN-8th); Lance Gooden (TX-5th); and Alexander Mooney (WV-2nd). Supporters pointed out that the bill will both protect our most vulnerable Americans and also serve as a safety net for all.
They further emphasized the importance of the Payment Choice Act in preserving personal freedom, choice, and privacy in consumers' spending and purchasing decisions, as well as meeting the need for a reliable means of payment that works day in and day out everywhere across the U.S., including during times of emergency when noncash payment methods are too often not available.
“We are pleased that Members on both sides of the aisle support the Payment Choice Act as a vital, necessary, and proper policy direction for our nation at this point in time,” said Mike Powell, NAC Corporate Secretary and Chair of NAC’s Governmental Affairs Committee, and Founder of Nashville, TN-based First Regents Bancservices, LLC. “Substantive arguments were presented during the Markup by Members of both parties who clearly expressed how critical this legislation is to our economy and our democratic way of life. This bill is about ensuring the strength of the U.S. Dollar, and maintaining its place as the world’s leading fiat currency and as 'legal tender’ accepted for payment everywhere here in the U.S.”
The measure now will be sent to the House Floor for a vote.
Bruce Renard, Executive Director
The National ATM Council, Inc.