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Departments Release Regulatory Agendas

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An arm of the U.S. Treasury Department wants to change the regulations that cover “stored value” cards to keep criminals from using them to finance terrorism and launder money.

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has described a stored value card regulatory project in its latest semiannual regulatory agenda report.

FinCen wants to revise the federal Bank Secrecy Act to change the name of “stored value” cards to “prepaid access” cards and find ways to promote development of the industry while discourage wrongdoers from misusing the cards.

Health benefits programs have become major users of stored value cards in recent years. Carriers and benefit plan administrators use the cards to give consumers access to value stored in flexible spending accounts, health reimbursement arrangements, health savings accounts and other personal health and benefits accounts.

FinCen hopes to put out a stored value card notice of proposed rulemaking this month.

In other regulatory agendas, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and other agencies did not include any agenda items related to implementation of the new federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

CMS did say that it is engaged in a long-term action to revise the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit programs for fiscal year 2011.

CMS officials are developing a final rule that will “strengthen various program participation and exit requirements; strengthen beneficiary protections; ensure that plan offerings to beneficiaries include meaningful differences; improve plan payment rules and processes; improve data collection for oversight and quality assessment; implement new policy such as a Part D formulary policy; and clarify program policy,” officials report.

CMS officials hope to complete the project by October 2012.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission notes in its agenda that it is still trying to implement a final rule that would classify indexed annuities as securities.


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