WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve and the U.S. government are looking to appoint a new group of three former Treasury Department officials as new regulators for the Federal Reserve, the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday announced.
Senators voted 16-9 to approve a resolution to set up the advisory committee.
The Senate Banking and Housing Committee, which is chaired by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation committees, are expected to vote on the nomination on Wednesday.
Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said he was looking forward to a panel hearing on the Fed’s work in addressing the housing crisis and the economy.
“The Fed is a great regulator,” Thune said, “and I think it will be an effective and well-researched panel.”
The Fed appointed a new director to replace the departing Gary Gensler in September, and the group is expected to have a permanent chairman and three other nominees by January, when the next full-time chairman is due to be appointed.
The Fed has a long history of appointing former government officials as its regulator, including a number of former top officials from both parties in the past.
The Fed’s first board member was appointed in 1985 by then-Chairman Alan Greenspan, who was later confirmed by the Senate.
The Senate Banking committee, led by Sen, Orrin Hatch, R.I., also approved a resolution on Tuesday to set aside $5 million to be spent on a “transparency report” about the Fed, which was expected to include the results of an independent audit.
The committee is also expected to recommend changes to the Federal Trade Commission to address the problems it faces with consumer complaints.